Report: Southern Brave v Birmingham Phoenix Women
Smriti Mandhana overtook Tammy Beaumont to return to the top of the Women’s Hundred scoring charts as Southern Brave beat Birmingham Phoenix by three runs in a thriller.
Indian opener Mandhana has 224 runs in the 2023 edition of the Hundred after a stylish 39, which all made her the first women past 600 runs in the tournament’s history.
The 84 runs she put on with opening partner Danni Wyatt set Brave on their way to fifth victory from six fixtures to send them back top of the table.
Lauren Bell, Georgia Adams and Anya Shrubsole both took two wickets to make sure Brave defended 132 as Phoenix reached 129 in front of a record 9,829 for a women’s Hundred game at the Ageas Bowl.
Brave won the toss and eased through the gears with Mandhana and Danni Wyatt cruising to 36 in a no thrills powerplay.
The overseas dominated her hitting through the leg side – with 25 of her runs coming hitting across the line, with a clear plan to rotate the strike with singles into the midwicket expanse.
Wyatt struck all but one of her six boundaries behind the wicket before she was bowled by an impeccable leg cutter for 43.
The 84 the opening duo put on was the Brave’s fourth highest stand ever and the eighth time the pair had scored over 50 together.
Mandhana fell 11 balls later to the 70th ball when she was given leg before to Arlott – who ended with two for 22. Replays showed it should have been reviewed as it pitched outside leg stump.
Phoenix played three leg spinners on a pitch which turned but all three were milked, with only Katie Levick getting on the wicket list when she had Georgia Adams stumped.
Maia Bouchier swept onto her own stumps by Erin Burns’ off spin – the Australian the only bowler to go at under a run a ball as Brave posted a slightly above par 132.
Sophie Devine swatted the third ball of the innings to midwicket but Sterre Kalis and Eve Jones built a platform with a 40-run stand.
They both fell within nine balls of each other as the spin duo of Kalea Moore and Adams both pulled Brave back on top – Kalis lbw to Adams and Jones caught at midwicket.
Another stand, this time of 43 between Burns and Amy Jones edged the visitors towards favourites. But Jones was run out by Bouchier’s strong arm after some slow running to leave Phoenix needing 36 off 24 balls.
Burns hit Adams for the first six of the day and then a four, but was caught at long on.
Defending 15 off the last end, Lauren Bell built pressure with a pair of slower ball dots before finding Abbey Freeborn mishitting to mid off.
And Anya Shrubsole had Tess Flintoff caught and bowled, Hannah Baker stumped and defended five off the final ball as Brave boosted their hopes of a third trip to Lord’s.
Tickets going fast for for The Hundred
The Hundred is an unforgettable experience, bringing world-class sporting action and excitement this summer. Tickets are selling fast for all four games at Edgbaston.
Tickets this year remain great value, with prices set at £5 for juniors aged 6-15, free for children five and under, and adults starting from £18.