- Jess Watkin, Amelia Kerr claim three-wicket hauls after top order puts total beyond Pakistan
New Zealand snapped a seven-match losing streak, their longest ever in T20Is, with their first win in the ICC Women’s World T20 2018. After their exit from the tournament was confirmed when India beat Ireland earlier, they salvaged some pride with a team effort to effect a 54-run win.
New Zealand’s top four scored 122 of the 144 for six they posted without any player getting to fifty. While they did not finish as well as they wanted, the runs proved enough despite the best efforts of Pakistan captain Javeria Khan.
Javeria lit up Pakistan’s chase briefly but brightly, hitting six boundaries in the Powerplay to give New Zealand some early jitters. She braved an opening spell from Lea Tahuhu, who bowled the fastest ball of the tournament at 126 kmph- and used the horizontal bat shots to good effect, helping Pakistan take 27 runs in the second and third overs. Pakistan were 49 for two at the end of the six overs; Javeria’s contribution 34.
Needing 96 runs off the remaining 84 balls, the rest of the Pakistan batters could not provide Javeria the support she needed. The introduction of off-spinner Jess Watkin took the life out of Pakistan’s challenge, as she removed Pakistan’s two best batters in consecutive overs: She first had Bismah Mahroof caught behind off a defensive prod, and then found the big wicket, Javeria (36, 23b, 6x4) feathering a reverse sweep into the ‘keeper’s gloves.
Pakistan’s lack of batting depth meant that they kept losing wickets to be all out for 90 in 18 overs.
Earlier, New Zealand’s innings lacked a single big performance, but four batters made significant contributions to prop up their total. Three partnerships came at more than a run-a-ball, the biggest of which was 59 off 51 from the openers, Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine.
Bates and Devine, reunited at the top of the order, hit only four fours in the Powerplay, but ran well to take 39 runs from the first six overs. Nida Dar was Pakistan’s most impressive bowler, and broke the partnership when she had Bates (35, 31b, 5x4) caught and bowled.
Devine (32, 31b, 2x4, 1x6) was dismissed in the 13th over by an excellent catch on the boundary from Nashra Sandhu, who maintained her balance as it seemed the ball would sail over for six. Amy Satterthwaite (26, 28b, 1x4) then joined the in-form Katie Martin (29, 24b, 2x4, 1x6) and added 37, until both were dismissed in a series that saw four wickets fall for 13 runs in eight balls, across the last two overs of the innings. The late slump meant that New Zealand scored only 70 in their last 10 overs, failing to double their halfway score.
New Zealand will play their next game against Ireland on Saturday (17 November)
Scores in brief:
New Zealand defeated Pakistan by 54 runs at the Guyana National Stadium at Georgetown, Guyana
New Zealand: 144-6, 20 overs (Suzie Bates 35, Sophie Devine 32; Aliya Riaz 2-29, Sana Mir 2-35)
Pakistan: 90 all out, 18 overs (Javeria Khan 36; Jess Watkin 3-9, Amelia Kerr 3-21)