Lauren Winfield-Hill plays as the Oval Invincibles to defend their title with a big win

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Lauren Winfield-Hill followed her former teammates as the Oval Invincibles began their title defense with an emphatic nine-wicket win over Northern Superchargers in the first game of the 2022 Women’s Hundred.

The former England opener looted an unbeaten 74 from 42 balls with a six and 11 fours, and shared an opening 104 with New Zealand’s Suzie Bates as the hosts galloped to a 144 target with 16 balls.

The successful chase came after Superchargers posted 143 for five courtesy of 51 from one of the stars of the Hundred 2021 Jemimah Rodrigues and 49 from Laura Wolvaardt, Ryana Macdonald-Gay, the hosts’ choice of attack with two for 25.

Alyssa Healy, fresh from her Commonwealth Games gold medal, gave the Superchargers an explosive start after being invited to bat first and cleared the ropes when she looted 14 from Mady Villiers’ first set of five.

The fun didn’t last long, however, as she lofted the third ball down the middle from spinner Sophia Smale to Alice Capsey, and the England starlet was soon back in the game with ball in hand, dismissing Beth Heath cheaply.

After that, Rodrigues took center stage, sweeping powerfully but also making the cut with great finesse.

Suzie Bates played her part in a century opening stand for the home team (Adam Davy/PA)

(PA wire)

She would find a willing ally in South Africa’s Wolvaardt, who survived a close call following a stumping and a quick ball from Shabnim Ismail as the duo shared a fourth wicket record of 66.

Rodrigues hit 50 balls from 31 with a glorious late cut, only to pot the next ball in front of the impressive Macdonald-Gay, and Superchargers went 20 balls without limit before some late shots from Wolvaardt led them to a seemingly impressive result.

Bates and Winfield-Hill happily gave chase, however, the former beating Lucy Higham for back-to-back fours while the latter smacked a short over the ropes from Beth Langston.

New Zealand’s Bates was given a life on the 10th when Katie Levick shot the easiest catch out of Linsey Smith’s bowl and as if a reprieve wasn’t enough, Bates was missed again in the next set when Jenny Gunn failed to tackle a hard one Fang could cling and bowled.

Alice Capsey ended things in style for the Invincibles (Adam Davy/PA)

(PA wire)

Horrors survived the pair, who reached 69 at the halfway point and the strategic time-out did little to spoil their momentum, Bates sweeping Alice Davidson-Richards behind in sixth.

Winfield-Hill reached 50 in 31 balls with Rodrigues and increased to 100 with Bates now in full swing.

It took a superb catch from Gunn’s Wolvaardt to remove Bates for 46 and break the stand, but Capsey was then the first ball dropped, albeit a difficult chance.

It proved the Superchargers’ last hope as Capsey joined the fun with a quick 25 from just eight balls to complete a dominant win.

https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/cricket/england-jenny-gunn-b2143468.html Lauren Winfield-Hill plays as the Oval Invincibles to defend their title with a big win

Fry Electronics Team

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