Jones shines but England Women edged out by Sri Lanka in last-ball drama at Women's World Cup
England Women were narrowly defeated by Sri Lanka in a dramatic last-ball finish to the opening match of their World Cup campaign in India.
Needing nine off the final over and a single off the last ball, Sri Lanka scraped home by one wicket after the defending champions had set them a target of 240 to win.
England’s consolation came in the shape of solid contributions from Warwickshire star Amy Jones, who made 41 on her England debut, and Jenny Gunn who struck a half century (51) as Charlotte Edwards’ team totalled 239-8 off their 50 Overs.
But although Arran Brindle, Katherine Brunt and Georgia Elwiss all took two wickets apiece, the momentum of the game swung Sri Lanka’s way as they struck five sixes on the way to reaching their victory target by the closest of margins – thanks largely to a 41-ball 56 from Eshani Kaushalya.
After the game Georgia Elwiss said: “We’re obviously disappointed with the result today and with our performance; we didn’t bring our ‘A’ game and Sri Lanka did. There were areas were we controlled the game, Jenny Gunn and Amy Jones, on her debut, put on a good partnership and our lower order showed what they could do with the bat. When we played a warm up game here earlier in the week we felt that 270 was par on this pitch, but we backed ourselves to go out and defend our decent total.
“We gave them too much width at times and they capitalised on that, there were periods where we pulled it back taking wickets but ultimately we gave them too many opportunities to score.
“We know what we have to do; we’ll be putting everything into training tomorrow and coming out hard against India on Sunday.”
On her debut Amy Jones said: “I was pleased to make my debut today and make a contribution, but I’m disappointed with the result. I was with the England squad for the World T20 in Sri Lanka and have made the step up from the England Women’s Academy. I’m in a squad with 14 very talented players and although I had shared the wicket keeping with Sarah in the warm up matches and we are all told to be ready to play, I wasn’t sure if it would happen out here in India. Despite the result this is an occasion that I will always remember.”
All England Women’s games in the tournament will be covered live on BBC 5live Sports Extra with a selection of games televised live on Sky Sports.
For a full match report and more information on the England Women’s team go to www.ecb.co.uk/englandwomen
For more information on the ICC Women’s World Cup 2013 go to www.wwc13.comm