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White Ferns Crash And Burn At Lord's

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
White Ferns Crash And Burn At Lord's

Wellington, June 22 NZPA - New Zealand froze on the biggest stage as England confirmed their dominance of women's cricket with a six-wicket victory in the world Twenty20 final at Lord's in London today.

Sent in to bat, the White Ferns collapsed in stunning fashion for 85, dismissed off the final ball of their 20-over innings.

England cruised to victory with three overs to spare to add the Twenty20 title to their World Cup win in Sydney three months ago when they beat the Ferns by four wickets.

England's batting star Claire Taylor guided them home with 39 not out.

White Ferns skipper Aimee Watkins, who believed 120 would have been defendable, denied that jitters played a part.

"We were not nervous, we were outplayed," she said.

" Perhaps we underestimated the pitch a bit and thought it was worth more runs than it was but obviously having our top order knocked over didn't allow us to create any momentum.

"We are gutted. It was only three months ago that we picked up another silver medal."

It was the New Zealanders' first visit to the home of cricket, and it seemed the venue and the occasion all proved too much after they had four comfortable wins to book their spot in the final.

England were fired up in the field and their pace bowler Katherine Brunt destroyed the New Zealand top order with swing to take an impressive three for six off four overs.

The Ferns never recovered from having their best two batters -- Suzie Bates and Watkins -- removed inside the first four overs.

Bates was stumped for two after playing over a delivery from spinner Laura Marsh, then the tournament's leading runscorer Watkins swung wildly at Brunt and was bowled for two.

Watkins guided New Zealand into the final with a blazing 89 not out off 58 balls against India and her early departure was a hammer blow.

By the end of Brunt's spell it was 23 for four off eight overs and the innings was in tatters.

Amy Satterthwaite topscored with 19 off 42 balls but even she had luck, dropped on 10 and 11 in the same Holly Colvin over.

The Ferns only limped past the lowest women's Twenty20 total of 69 -- set by the Netherlands against West Indies last year -- in the 19th over as tailenders Kate Pulford and Sophie Devine hit out.

New Zealand's seamers made a strong start, but defending little more than four runs an over was a tough ask.

Their leading wicket-taker Sian Ruck bowled England captain Charlotte Edwards for nine in her accurate four-over spell of one for 17.

Pulford also swung the ball and was unlucky not to remove Taylor without scoring when an edge clipped the outstretched glove of Rachel Priest.

Pulford dismissed opener Sarah Taylor for 23, but Claire Taylor relished her let-off to guide a jubilant home side to their target.

"Unfortunately we didn't execute as well as what we'd hoped today but we still believe the plans were the right ones," New Zealand coach Gary Stead said.

England captain Charlotte Edwards said the victory had been "easier than I thought it would be".

"Our bowling attack bowled superbly well, it was their best performance of the tournament."

England's Taylor was named player-of-the-tournament for her haul 199 runs, with many innings proving crucial.

She just pipped Watkins, who also had a great tournament and ensured New Zealand progressed to the final.

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