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Cricket - 17. February 2008.



Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars Vice-Captain Lisa Sthalekar has gone to stumps on day three of the women’s Ashes Test at the Bradman Oval in Bowral 95 not out.


Sthalekar’s innings was one of the highlights of the day for the Australians who are 4/195 in their second innings, a lead of 105 runs.


After bowling the English out for 244 prior to lunch, the Australians found themselves in early trouble at 3/34. Sthalekar and Shelley Nitschke then dug in, putting on 107 runs for the fourth wicket and erasing England’s 90 run first innings lead in the process. It took a brilliant piece of fielding from Holly Colvin to break the partnership when she caught Nitschke off her own bowling for 36.


“It was frustrating. They were bowling quite wide and clogging up the off side so Shelley and I really had to pick the right ball. We were really focused on starting a partnership and knocking off the deficit,” said Sthalekar.


Kate Blackwell then joined the action and immediately got on with the job of building the lead. Sthalekar continued to entertain the crowd with her classical cover drives and fearsome pull shots, as she and Blackwell established a quick fire unbeaten 54 run stand for the fifth wicket.


The pair will look to continue their run tomorrow morning and set England a challenging run chase of the fourth and final day of the match.


“A draw for us isn’t going to cut it. We’ll definitely be looking for quick runs to get ourselves into the best position that we can,” said Sthalekar.


Sthalekar also added that she would not loose any sleep tonight, despite being stranded in the 90’s.


“To be honest I’m not really worried about my individual performance. The most important thing is getting a team score that is competitive against the English. If I need to swing from ball one I’ll do it – I don’t care what score I am on.”


The final day of the Ashes Test commences at 10:30am tomorrow. Entry is free.

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