South East Stars stutter to below-par total in face of Vipers’ spin threat
Southern Vipers 138 for 3 (Wyatt 64*) beat South East Stars 137 (Taylor 4-21) by seven wickets
Wyatt scored 64 not out, with international team-mate Georgia Elwiss notching 45, as Vipers maintained their 100% RHF Trophy record – which now stretches to nine wins across two seasons.
The Stars were stuck in and found themselves on the end of Taylor immediately, her first three overs returning an incredible 3 for 1.
It was the movement away from the bat which accounted for Alice Davidson-Richards, who prodded to Georgia Adams at first slip. Sophia Dunkley, on the back of a sublime unbeaten 104 against Sunrisers, only lasted two balls before she nicked behind, and Taylor then found Alice Capsey slashing to Charlie Dean at point to leave the Stars slumped on 24 for 3.
Bryony Smith and Grace Gibbs rebuilt with a 41-run stand, with the former smashing 41 off 38 to continue her early season form. They both fell as they were bowled, the former while going back to Dean and the latter by a Wyatt half-tracker.
Aylish Cranstone scored 31 but was stumped off Wyatt, before the England allrounder had Rhianna Southby caught top-edging to fine leg and Kirstie White skied Adams to midwicket.
Taylor returned to pick up Tash Farrant mistiming to mid-on, before Dean completed the spin-bowling masterclass by pinning Danielle Gregory. In total the Vipers’ spin bowlers took 10 for 73, with Taylor’s four-for joined by Wyatt’s 3 for 19, Dean’s 2 for 22 and Adams’ 1 for 11.
England fast bowler Freya Davies temporarily ended the spin dominance when Adams wafted outside her off stump to first slip. Maia Bouchier followed as she worked Smith to Dunkley midwicket – but Wyatt remained risk-averse as she embarked on an 87-run stand with Elwiss.
Dunkley, following her duck, continued her poor day as she put down Elwiss and Wyatt in consecutive deliveries at deep midwicket.
Wyatt continued to a 71-ball fifty, her 26th in List A cricket, but it was Elwiss who accelerated towards the winning post with 45 from 43. In trying to win the match in one big blow Elwiss offered a simple catch to mid-off, before Dean did crash the winning runs soon after, with 128 balls to spare.