Report: Bears v Wales, Vitality County Women’s T20, Match One
It was an impressive start for the Bears’ in the Vitality County T20, beating Cricket Wales women by 24 runs to secure victory in a low scoring affair.
Marie Kelly continued her form from the past two years, top scoring on 40 whilst Georgia Davis and Hannah Baker impressed in the bowling unit, taking 3-14 and 4-14 respectively.
The Bears won the toss and batted, and opener, Eve Jones looked in good touch on her debut for the Bears, however, was caught in the third over for 12.
Gwenan Davies came to the crease alongside opener Marie Kelly but gave Wales their second wicket when she was caught for 9. Jo Gardner then was bowled first ball, reducing Bears to 31/3.
Thea Brookes provided support for captain, Kelly, who was playing fluently and both keeping the scoreboard ticking over. They took their partnership to 44 before Kelly was caught for 40. Brookes was then caught next ball for 10, as the home side reached 75/5 after 12 overs.
Ria Fackrell came to the crease and played a much-needed explosive innings towards the back end of the 20 overs, hitting four boundaries, scoring 21 off 17 balls before she was bowled.
Georgia Davis kept things steady down the other end but was bowled for 9. The lower order managed to get the Bears to a solid total on a slow pitch, reaching 121 with Baker out for 6 and Russel caught for 2.
The Bears’ defence got off to an excellent start as off spinner, Davis came into the attack to take three wickets for just 14 runs. Her first ball got the wicket of Basketter who went without scoring and then she trapped Gibson lbw for 18 before having Parfitt caught for 11.
Jo Gardener then came into the attack to replace Davis and made an immediate impact, bowling Gammon for 4, as Wales fell to 38/4 in the ninth over.
Leg spinner, Hannah Baker made her debut in a Bears shirt and secured her first wicket, with Evans stumped for 7.
Runs felt hard to come by from the visitors, with the Bears bowlers putting on the pressure, resulting in an excellent run out by Gardner, to dismiss Clements for 1.
Wales were left needing 56 from the remaining five overs. A task that seemed to be too much for the lower order, as Baker continued the pressure, getting her second wicket when she dismissed opener G Parfitt for 29. Her third came when Smale was caught for 18, and the fourth bowling Hughes for 4 as Wales finished on 97/9 from their 20 overs to give Bears their first win of the day.