England did well in the Ashes 2023 series with the T20I series clinched as the hosts bagged the match perfectly with 5 wickets in hand and 4 balls still to spare, despite much drama in the last two overs.
And there were three trophies for the hosts as Alice Capsey was adjudged the Player of the Match for her match-winning 46-run knock along with Danni Wyatt was awarded as the Player of the Series with 109 runs in her account.
Lord’s was set to experience yet another Australia-England fixture as the visitors were slated at an upper hand with 6-2. With this setting, the hosts won the toss and chose to bowl first.
Beth Mooney and Alyssa Healy trudged down the ground valiantly to give a quick and prompt start to the Australian innings as the latter went off the mark on the very first ball of the match with a boundary followed by a four on the next ball.
Healy had opened her arms round to join the boundary line hitting over and over again, the fresh one on the fourth ball of the second over. But she had to depart early in the fourth over despite a fearless start. Tahlia McGrath, the next down, commenced the campaign fine with a healing boundary on the second ball of the fifth over.
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Mooney too joined hands with McGrath to come up with a combination of boundaries to conclude the powerplay on fine terms at 36 for the loss of 1. But an unfortunate McGrath had to face her dismissal in the seventh over as Danielle Gibson brought the break in the building partnership.
Mooney recovered from the loss much more quickly with three astounding smashes lightening hard in the eighth over by Sarah Glenn and one more in the following over. Ashleigh Gardner was keeping it low-key with Mooney as she was only dealing in singles and it was the tenth over of the innings that Nat Sciver-Brunt got the breakthrough right at time ousting Mooney at 32 off 27.
The wicket somewhat triggered Gardner to hit the first six of the match on the second ball of the eleventh over followed by a four a ball later. The momentum was building high for Gardner as both the twelfth and the thirteenth over witnessed a boundary each before she finally left for the dugout in the fourteenth over at 32 off 25.
Grace Harris and Ellyse Perry were fresh down on the crease but somewhat looked poised as Harris went for a fine sweep on a slower for a splendid four on the last ball of the fifteenth over followed by Perry starting on the first ball of the sixteenth over with a majestic six.
Amassing some singles with a fine display of quick running between the wickets Perry stood up with three boundaries in the eighteenth over before returning to the pavilion on the very first ball of the next over at 34 off 25.
Although Harris tried to pull things up with two boundaries, one in the nineteenth over and another in the last over, but a single on the fourth ball of the over turned the fortune to the English side thus costing Australia of two more hazards in the name of Annabel Sutherland (3 off 4) and Harris (25 off 15). Australia summed up at 155 for the loss of 7.
After some fine showers and a gentle breeze on the show, the game was set to begin with England only requiring 119 runs to win in 14 overs. Danni Wyatt and Sophia Dunkley stepped out of the pavilion to begin the chase down and contemplate their points in the ongoing Ashes Series.
Dunkley was off the mark with a single on the very first ball of the innings and Wyatt ended the over with a clever cut to the deep point for four. Dunkley too emerged with a four in the second over to push the run rate early in the chase.
Wyatt was on fire with two and three back-to-back boundaries, the first in the third over and the second streak in the fourth over but misfortunes turned their way for England, and she had to depart much early in the same over at 26 off just 15 followed by a quick dismissal of Dunkley on the first ball of the fifth over.
Both the openers were back into the pavilion now and the 1st and 2nd down were standing fresh but furious with the quick dismissals on the crease. Nat Sciver-Brunt kicked things up to release some pressure by bagging an angled sweep on the first ball of the sixth over followed by Alice Capsey’s first six of the innings on the fifth ball thus concluding the powerplay at 57 for 2.
Brunt and Capsey were on the forefront of a skimmed and smooth partnership building all through the corners of the ground as both looked poised with a quick rotation of strikes, working on singles, doubles and even triples with timely boundaries like Brunt’s one in the seventh over and Capsey’s two fence-touching smashes in the ninth over.
Capsey was moving brilliantly towards the scoreboard with one more maximum of the chase and a boundary on the first and second ball of the twelfth over respectively. Four runs short of the half century, and the majestically marching Capsey was dismissed by a Megan Schutt delivery that caught her out by Gardner.
England were near the win but there was much drama left for the English dugout to see as despite Heather Knight kicking her way off with a charged-up hit for a four in the thirteenth over, Brunt had to leave for the pavilion unfairly at 25 off 25 balls.
Knight too got succumbed to Jonassen for an LBW on the first ball of the fourteenth and the last over but Gibson clinched the series for her team with a reverse sweep to third man for four thus putting the scoreboard at 121 for the loss of 5.
Ashes 2023: Brief scores
Australia 155/7 in 20 overs (Ellyse Perry 34, Ash Gardner 32; Nat Sciver-Brunt 2-31) lost to England 121/5 in 13.2 overs (Alice Capsey 46, Danielle Wyatt 26; Megan Schutt 2-35) by 5 wickets (DLS method).