February 3, 2023

England 256 (Sciver 85, Selman 3-29, Matthews 3-56) West Indies 105 (Matthews 28, Ecclestone 3-9, Sciver 2-16) with 151 runs

Nat Sciver was back in the running and wickets as England completed a 3–0 sweep of their ODI series with the West Indies in Antigua.

Player of the match and series Sciver scored her second half-century in three games since making her comeback on this tour after a three-month break, setting a record for most ODI runs by an England in an calendar year. in the process.

Her 85 from 69 balls to keep England steady at 84 for 4 took her to 833 ODI runs for 2022 and past Claire Taylor’s mark of 807 in 2005, despite missing the three games against India in September. It followed her 96-ball 90 in the first game against the West Indies, marking her return to action.

Sciver also took two important wickets in an outstanding bowling performance from England on Friday, led by Sophie Ecclestone’s stingy three-wicket haul, as the West Indies collapsed to 105 in the chase of 257.

For the second game in a row, the hosts failed to capitalize after bowling England within their 50-over allocation and have now gone 11 ODI innings without reaching 200.

Apart from captain Hayley Matthews, who had given her side a chance by claiming the wickets of Sciver, Danni Wyatt and Charlie Dean as England were bowled out for 256 in 43.3 overs, the West Indies batting performance was poor, with no one else who passed 13. .

Even Matthews’ 28 from 39 fell short, but she started well enough with some superb extra-cover drives early on Freya Davies, standing aside for Lauren Bell who rested after her crucial four-wicket haul in the second game of the season. Tuesday.

Matthews fell to a brilliant one-handed catch by Ecclestone, launching herself on slip to the right to pick the ball out of the air from Kate Cross to cross West Indies at 40 for 1 in the 11th.

Cross was extremely frugal with 1 for 14 from her seven overs, but left arm spinner Ecclestone was next level in that department with 48 dot balls in her nine overs, taking three wickets for just nine runs. Offspinner Dean was also frugal with 40 dot balls in eight overs and 1 for 16.

The West Indies run rate caused a nosedive in Matthews’ dismissal. Sciver had Kycia Knight caught by Tammy Beaumont and pinned Rashada Williams, who had scored an unbeaten half-century in the second game, lbw either side of Dean’s removal of Aaliyah Alleyne, stumped for 8 as West Indies lost 3 for 0 in the space of 10 balls.

Ecclestone then had two in an over as she removed Chedean Nation for a struggling 10 off 30 balls and Chinelle Henry, both lbw, to make it 91 for 7 at the end of the 32nd over. From there, the tail dropped and with Shakera Selman unable to bat due to injury, the home side posted their worst total of the series.

Earlier, Kaysia Schultz, the orthodox left-arm spinner on her debut, had claimed the wickets from opener Emma Lamb, ending an opening 63-run stand with Beaumont, and No. 3 Sophia Dunkley before Sciver and Danni Wyatt stabilized England with an 80-run partnership for the fifth wicket.

Sciver clipped a fuller ball from Cherry-Ann Fraser to the boundary through a back square leg to bring her 20th ODI fifty. But Matthews put herself back on the attack in the 28th over and she pryed out two vital wickets, flipped one up as Wyatt advanced and was stunned before her full, flying pitch slid under Sciver’s attempted slog-sweep and clattered into leg stump.

Selman had bowled Beaumont as England went from 63 for 0 to 65 for 2 and she took her second when she trapped Ecclestone lbw and England again faltered at 218 for 7.

Matthews lured Dean with a well-flying pitch that resulted in a catch back and, after Cross fell to Selman’s yorker, Henry – who had seen chances play out at Wyatt and Amy Jones – had Davies caught by Shemaine Campbelle at cover point.

That left Amy Jones, who faced resting captain Heather Knight as she returned from hip surgery, stranded on 32 off 31 balls after her impressive 70 not out in the second game.

New England head coach Jon Lewis now has three wins from as many games and both Jones and Sciver spoke positively about the more aggressive approach he has been trying to instill in the side since taking over from Lisa Keightley at the end of last month.

“We commit to a style of play and we have full support,” Jones told BT Sport. “While it won’t come out every time, we’ve still got three pretty decent scores in this series, so it’s definitely a good thing for us to continue. It’s something we’ll definitely be committed to.”

Sciver added: “I feel really good to be back and very positive to be back with this team and with a new coach who has really helped us see a different way of playing.”

There was no doubt in Matthews that her side’s batting had let them down, totaling 165 and 118 in the first two games, both of which England won by 142 runs.

“Any time you get into an ODI series and the highest score is 160, you’re probably missing a bit with the bat,” said Matthews. “It’s definitely an area we need to focus more on, find a way to score more points overall, hopefully we can do that in the upcoming T20 series. This series has been disappointing but as a team I think we learn a lot from it and hopefully we can take some of those lessons into the series we have.”

The sides will play the first of five T20Is on Sunday in Antigua before moving on to Barbados for the remaining four.

Valkerie Baynes is editor-in-chief at ESPNcricinfo

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