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Heather Knight hits century to guide England to series-sealing record chase


H

eather Knight guided England to a record run-chase with an outstanding 101 to seal England’s One-Day International series against New Zealand.

The England captain scored her second ODI century as England hauled down New Zealand’s total to take an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series.

Knight had appeared set to see her side home before picking out a diving Brooke Halliday in the deep.

It had appeared to precipitate a major wobble after Danielle Wyatt was also dismissed with the finishing line in sight, a powerful final-over blow down the ground for four from Anya Shrubsole steadied the nerves before a most peculiar ending.

With her eyes on glory, Sophie Ecclestone had sashayed down the track for an almighty heave, beaten by the drift from off-spinner Leigh Kasperek.

Yet the ball had drifted beyond the wide line in evading Ecclestone’s swipe, with umpire David Millns signalling the extra to seal England’s chase.

Ahead of a winter that will see them head to Australia for an away Ashes and then New Zealand to defend their Women’s World Cup crown, it was a timely reminder of England’s potential batting second.

Knight’s side had not overhauled a score in excess of 240 since 2015 and

Having won the toss, Knight opted to bowl first in a bid to exploit an emerald sheen on a Derby pitch that otherwise appeared good for batting.

She was rewarded by a fine new-ball spell from Shrubsole, fit to return to the side alongside Freya Davies and Nat Sciver, who removed both Maddy Green and Lauren Down after Susie Bates’ run-out.

Those wickets brought together experienced pair Amy Satterthwaite and Sophie Devine (41), who stabilised the innings before the latter was removed by a ball from off-spinner Charlie Dean that appeared to keep a little low.


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