England Women suffered defeat at the hands of state side Victoria Spirit as they played their first practice match of the Australia tour at Caulfield Grammar School in Melbourne.
England opted to bat first and Victoria’s bowlers started well, dismissing England’s top-order fairly easily leaving them 4-38 after the 17th over. Jenny Gunn was the only player to spend any time at the crease for England, scoring 29 runs off 77 balls. Nicky Shaw came in down the order and hit 26 off 23 balls, including two fours and one six, but it was soon over with England all out for 137 off 49 overs.
In response Victoria knocked off the runs in the 35th over with both Rachel Haynes (63 not out) and Sarah Edwards (50 not out) scoring half centuries to steer them home. Jenny Gunn trapped Elyse Villani lbw for 15 in the fourth over, but that was the only scalp for the tourists.
England fielded all thirteen players currently in Australia in order to give everybody match practice ahead of the series which starts on Feb 1 with a Twenty20 at the MCG.
Head Coach Mark Dobson said: “We’re disappointed with our performance today. It’s a long way from our best, but I’m confident that with a week’s training and two more warm-up games we’ll be back close to our best and ready to compete.”
Captain Charlotte Edwards added: “Victoria bowled and fielded really well today, so credit to them. We were well below par, but we’re confident we’ll bounce back from this for the next two warm-up games.”
Sarah Taylor (wk)
Charlotte Edwards (c)
– but the sailors praise the new boats