Charlotte Edwards Cup
Charlotte Edwards Cup Logo Sat 11 June, 12:00

The County Ground, Northampton

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South East Stars

South East Stars

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South East Stars

Central Sparks

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Report: South East Stars v Central Sparks, Charlotte Edwards Cup

Central Sparks secured a two-wicket victory over South East Stars to reach the final of the Charlotte Edwards Cup.

The Stars chose to bat but were reduced to 25-5 in the sixth after devastating bowling from Issy Wong (2-8) and Grace Potts (3-20) at Wantage Road as they posted 104-8 from their 20 overs.

Sparks began the chase confidently and despite Bryony Smith (4-14) leading the fightback they hung on to set up a final with Southern Vipers, with skipper Eve Jones (29) starring.

The Stars endured an awful start, losing Smith before any runs were on the board before Aylish Cranstone, the tournament’s second top-scorer, also departed without scoring in Northampton.

Wong and Potts were doing most of the damage but the partnership of Kalea Moore (34) and Alice Davidson-Richards (29) helped the Stars recover and give themselves something to defend.

Sparks looked to be cruising towards the total with Eve Jones and Wong putting on 34 for the first wicket, when the latter fell for 11.

But Amy Jones’ dismissal with the score at 59-2 prompted a collapse that saw the Sparks lose six wickets for 24 runs thanks to a great spell from Smith.

Sparks then lost Sarah Glenn to leave them needing seven from the final two overs and it was Emily Arlott who struck the winning run with five balls to spare to see them into the final.

Preview: Central Sparks eye Finals Day glory

Central Sparks have silverware in their sights as they prepare to take part in the Charlotte Edwards Cup Finals Day at Northampton on Saturday.

The Sparks are two wins from glory as they face South East Stars in the play-off at 12pm with the winner meeting Southern Vipers in the final at 4pm. 

The play-off is set to be a fascinating and finely-balanced game, the two sides already having beaten each other in the group stage of the competition. The Sparks won by 34 runs at Guildford before the Stars gained revenge with a ten-run (D/L) victort at Edgbaston.  

Bears product Issy Wong will be at the heart of the Sparks’ strategy, both as pinch hitter and pace bowler, and says the squad can’t wait for Finals Day to arrive. 

“We have shown what we are capable of and will go into the day with a lot of confidence,” she said.  

“We know the Stars are a good side and have got good players but we have a lot of trust in our side as well. We are evens with them this season after we beat them at their place and they won at ours so maybe meeting at a neutral venue will show who the real winners will be. 

“Finals Day is a great chance for us to shine as individuals and as a team and it’s really exciting to see how T20 cricket has developed after the Hundred last season. It’s big one for us this weekend and we are all super-excited about it. 

“Something we have been very positive about this year is our intent. If the ball is there to hit out of the park, let’s try to hit it out of the park. A lot of that has come from the Hundred which has a really big effect on the women’s game, especially in T20. This is a really exciting time to be involved in women’s cricket and to be a woman in sport.” 

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