Wales Women bounce back with emphatic victory
Following the disappointment of last weekend against Berkshire and Surrey, Wales Women followed consecutive defeats with their opening win of the season against newly promoted Northants. Having progressed to Division 2 this season, the hosts also had a difficult start to their campaign with two losses, but it was Wales who came out on top in the battle to secure the first victory.
Captain Lauren Parfitt lost the toss and was put in to bat on a dry and bright day at Desborough Town CC. Openers Gabby Basketter (45) and Rachel Priest (13) started positively until the latter was caught by an outstanding one-handed catch at mid-off. Parfitt and Basketter moved the score to 79-1, but once again a slight middle-order collapse halted proceedings as Alex Griffiths, Claire Nicholas and Danielle Gibson fell cheaply. Georgia Parfitt managed a respectable 20 but it was the 9th wicket partnership of Naomi Davies (12) and Rebecca Struthers (37 not out) that swung the game in Wales’ favour with a stand of 49, accelerating quickly in the final overs to progress from 127-8 to 176-9 – the final score being 180.
The bowlers were full of confidence following the brilliant efforts from the tail-end batsmen, and were granted an ideal start when Ffion Wynne broke the opening partnership in the third over of the game. Despite a few dropped catches, it was a clinical bowling and fielding performance from the side with Rebecca Struthers taking 4 catches, as Northants were all out for 127. There were some impressive cameos from Patricia Hankins (23) and Alicia Presland (29) but the Welsh bowlers maintained their discipline throughout and squeezed the pressure effectively. The wickets were shared to reflect a valiant team effort, with Wynne, Parfitt and Basketter claiming 2 each, and Lydia Clements, Gibson and Claire Nicholas also claiming 1.
Wales will be looking to utilise this momentum going into Sundays game against Derbyshire at Panteg CC.