Bready (Ireland), July 18 ( Surprise Sports Desk) Continuing from where she had left off the previous day against Pakistan, Australia women’s team spinner Alana King came up with another commanding performance to earn her side a massive nine-wicket win against hosts Ireland in the second match of the Ireland Tri-Nation Women’s T20I Series here.
King had returned superb figures of 3/8 in the abandoned game against Pakistan on Saturday and on Sunday night she had another three-wicket haul to her name as Australia restricted the hosts to just 99/8 in 20 overs.
The Meg Lanning-led side then scored the required runs for the loss of just one wicket — wicketkeeper-opening batter Alyssa Healy — beginning their preparations for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on an extremely positive note.
Experienced pacer Megan Schutt picked up the valuable wicket of Ireland young gun Gaby Lewis in the opening over of the match and the hosts were never able to recover. Young quick Darcie Brown bowled superbly to dismiss Orla Prendergast (12) and skipper Laura Delany (0) as she collected impressive figures of 2/9, while spinner Alana King was just as impressive.
King had figures of 3/9 from her four overs and was named ‘Player of the Match’ for her efforts with the ball.
Only four Ireland batters reached double figures after they were sent in to bat by Meg Lanning, with opener Rebecca Stokell top-scoring for the home side with a well-compiled 22. Stokell missed a straight one from King as Ireland slumped to 44/6 in the 12th over, with Ava Canning (14 not out) and Leah Paul (12) adding some valuable late runs to help bulk up the score.
However, a score of 99/8 was never going to be enough against this strong Australia batting line-up and the run chase was done and dusted inside 13 overs. Australia openers Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney were keen to knock off the runs as quickly as possible as they took 19 runs from the opening two overs of the chase.
Seamer Arlene Kelly, though, removed Healy for 10 in the fifth over, but that was about as good as it got for the young Ireland side as the steady head of Lanning came to the crease to join Mooney. The pair batted sensibly for the majority of their unbeaten 68-run stand and dispatched the bad deliveries when required as they defeated Ireland with relative ease.
Brief scores: Ireland Women 99/8 in 20 overs (Rebecca Stokell 22; Alana King 3/9, Darcie Brown 2/9) lost to Australia 103/1 in 12.5 overs (Beth Mooney 45 not out, Meg Lanning 39 not out) by nine wickets.
— Surprise Sports Desk