Charlotte Edwards Cup: Southern Vipers make it four out of four as Sparks lose 100% record

Danni Wyatt batting for Southern Vipers
Danni Wyatt has scored two T20 international hundreds for England

England’s Danni Wyatt raced to a 29-ball 50 as Southern Vipers beat Lightning to make it four wins out of four in the Charlotte Edwards Cup.

Lightning were bowled out for 141 at Trent Bridge and Wyatt made 76 as Vipers reached 142-5 to win by five wickets with 3.2 overs to spare.

Central Sparks lost their 100% record when South East Stars beat them by 10 runs in a rain-hit game at Edgbaston.

Northern Diamonds and Western Storm won Sunday’s two other matches.

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Wyatt shows international class

Lightning, with one win from their three previous games, chose to bat after winning the toss against Vipers, but lost Tammy Beaumont for one in only the second over, caught behind off Freya Kemp as she chased an angled delivery.

Marie Kelly smashed three sixes and four fours in her 36 off only 12 balls but was the last of three batters dismissed with the score on 52.

Lucy Higham weighed in with a useful 31, but Georgia Elwiss took 3-28 and Tara Norris ended the innings with two balls remaining by dismissing Grace Ballinger.

It looked like a total well within Vipers’ compass and although Georgia Adams went for 14, Wyatt and Maia Bouchier put on 69 in eight overs for the second wicket.

Wyatt hit Higham over long-on for six and brought up her half-century with a lofted straight drive for four off Kelly, one off 11 boundaries in her 44-ball knock.

She eventually holed out at deep mid-wicket, but Elwiss dabbed a single off left-armer Ballinger to end the game in the 17th over and finish on 13 not out.

“It was a good wicket but there was a little bit there just back of a length, so it was just a case of getting behind those and capitalising on anything full, making a bit of room because I like to hit through the off-side and taking down the spinners – that was my plan,” Wyatt told BBC Solent Sport.

Setback for Sparks

Aylish Cranstone made her third half-century in four innings as she batted right through the entire 20 overs for South East Stars for an unbeaten 59 from 53 balls in the evening fixture.

She hit two sixes and six fours as the 2021 winners achieved a score of 148-6 from their 20 overs, with Sarah Glenn taking 3-17 for the home side.

Sparks lost two early wickets, including that of England’s Amy Jones, who was run out for eight when a shot by team-mate Eve Jones deflected onto the stumps off the hand of bowler Freya Davies.

They were 33-2 in the fourth over when rain arrived, forcing a delay of about 50 minutes and, with eight overs lost, a revised target of 102 meant Sparks had to score 69 off 51 balls.

Eve Jones (25) soon holed out off Dani Gregory (2-6) as five wickets went down for 16 runs before Glenn and Emily Arlott produced a flurry of fours.

Needing 19 from the final over, the pair could not keep the boundaries coming and Sparks ended on 91-7, with Arlott 19 not out and Glenn on 14.

Diamonds overcome poor start

Earlier, Northern Diamonds – last year’s beaten finalists – slumped from 61-2 to 87-6 in the space of five overs after batting first at Headingley and Hannah Jones (3-23) took three wickets in four balls as they were all out from the final delivery of their innings.

Thunder were going along well in reply at 41-1 in the seventh over, but the loss of four wickets for seven runs left their lower order with plenty of work to do.

Katie Levick took 3-25 from her four overs and although Phoebe Graham hit 20 off 16 balls, Thunder were bowled out for 99 with the final over of their innings unused.

Sophie Luff
Western Storm’s Sophie Luff reached her half-century from 42 balls faced

At Taunton, Western Storm posted a total of 169-5, the third highest so far in this season’s competition, as Luff shared a stand of 69 with Heather Knight (34) and hit a six and 10 fours before she was lbw to Kelly Castle (2-16).

Sunrisers needed a good start facing such a tough target but found themselves 11-2 and 29-3 before Naomi Dattani boosted their hopes with 53 off 51 balls.

She was eventually caught at mid-off to leave Sunrisers on 85-4 after 15 overs and although Castle made an unbeaten 40 off 36 balls, they came up well short as Claire Nicholas claimed 2-22.

Wednesday fixtures

Riverside: Northern Diamonds v Lightning (14:15)

Northampton: Sunrisers v Central Sparks (14:30)

Bristol: Western Storm v South East Stars (14:30)

Old Trafford: Thunder v Southern Vipers (19:00)

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