Sophie is Devine as NZ demolish England to claim Bronze

NEW Zealand is the inaugural Commonwealth Games bronze medallists, after demolishing England to win the Bronze Medal match at the 2022 Games. Despite having the shorter turnaround of the two teams, it did not matter for the Kiwis as they took care of the English with ease. The win was largely thanks to Sophie Devine, whose captain’s performance with both bat and ball helped guide her side to the triumph.

After winning the toss and electing to bat, the English may have wished they had selected to field. They lost their first wicket after only seven balls, and then lost another one eight deliveries later.

Natalie Sciver and later Amy Jones tried to wrestle momentum back for the host country, but with too many wickets falling around them, these efforts were always going to be in vain. The English almost did not survive the full 20 overs, but hung out to see out the full innings. They ultimately finished on 9/110. Sciver finished on 27 and Jones finished on 26, but Sophie Ecclestone’s 18 was the only other score in double figures.

Meanwhile for the New Zealanders, Hayley Jensen (3/24 from 4), Devine (2/11 from 3) and Fran Jonas (2/22 from 4) were the main offenders with the ball, all taking multiple wickets.

In reply, Devine and Suzie Bates got off to a flying start, going at well over 10 runs an over before Bates got dismissed for 20. They had a slight wobble, losing Georgia Plimmer cheaply only nine balls later, but it proved to be only a minor inconvenience as Devine and Amelia Kerr wrapped up proceedings in the 12th over. Devine finished on 51 not out while Kerr finished on 21 not out.

For the English it was Sciver and Freya Kemp who were the ones able to pick up the two wickets. The win completes a remarkable turnaround for the Kiwis, who have underperformed at the last few World Cups but will certainly be looking to build on this result moving forward.

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