The 21st match of the Kia Women’s Super League 2019 will be played between Western Storm and Surrey Stars at the Cooper Associates County Ground in Taunton.
The match starts at 3:00 PM local time (7:30 PM IST) (2:00 PM GMT).
Western Storm added one more win to their feather as they cruised to 7th consecutive victory. They have earned 30 points thus far, over 10 points more than any other team. These are enough for the Western Storm to become the first side to seal a place in the Finals day. They will face Surrey Stars straight after defeating the Southern Vipers. The Western Storm finished with 170/3 against the Vipers.
Fifties from Heather Knight (61) and Fran Wilson (50*) powered the hosts to a big total after the openers handed a good start. Danielle Wyatt’s 32-ball 56 kept the Vipers alive in the chase but the visitors fell 16 short of the target. On the other hand, the defending champions Surrey Stars succumbed to their 3rd consecutive defeat. The total of 121/6 wasn’t enough against the Yorkshire Diamonds on Tuesday.
The Taunton weather is unlikely to interrupt this match. Less than 5% of precipitation is expected during the match timings. Little over 10% chances of rain is expected at around 12 PM local time. As the game begins at 3 PM local time, it might not even cause a delayed start.
The County Ground in Taunton has witnessed some record totals in both Men’s and Women’s T20s over the last couple of years. However, Lancashire Thunder made only 141 during the game played earlier this season. This could be the effect of Thunder’s batting depth. A much bigger score can be seen if the home team Western Storm bats first.
Average first innings score: 184 (Unaffected Women’s T20s since 2018)
Record of chasing teams: Won – 3, Lost – 4
Injury and Availability News:
(Will be added when there is an update)
Probable Playing XIs:
Smriti Mandhana, Rachel Priest, Heather Knight (C), Fran Wilson, Deepti Sharma, Sophie Luff, Naomi Dattani, Anya Shrubsole, Alex Griffiths, Freya Davies, Claire Nicholas.
Bench: Ellie Mitchell, Sonia Odedra, Dani Gibson.
Lizelle Lee, Bryony Smith, Sarah Taylor, Dane van Niekerk, Natalie Sciver (C), Marizanne Kapp, Laura Marsh, Mady Villiers, Aylish Cranstone, Eva Gray, Amy Gordon.
Bench: Hannah Jones, Rhianna Southby, Grace Gibbs, Gwenan Davies.
Smriti Mandhana and Heather Knight have good records in Twenty20s while playing in Taunton. , Rachel Priest and Fran Wilson too are quite important given how Western Storm’s top-order has dominated in this tournament.
Captain and Vice-Captain Selection:
Captain – Heather Knight, Smriti Mandhana, Dane van Niekerk, Lizelle Lee
Vice-Captain – Natalie Sciver, Marizanne Kapp, Rachel Priest, Fran Wilson
Dane van Niekerk earned at least 20 points in all five matches while Heather Knight claimed at least 34 points in five of her previous six matches.
Suggested Playing XI for Head to Head/Small Leagues:
Keeper – Rachel Priest
Batsmen – Smriti Mandhana, Fran Wilson, Heather Knight (C), Bryony Smith
All-Rounders – Natalie Sciver, Dane van Niekerk (VC)
Bowlers – Freya Davies, Claire Nicholas, Marizanne Kapp, Laura Marsh
Suggested Playing XI for Grand Leagues/Mega Leagues:
Keeper – Sarah Taylor
Batsmen – Smriti Mandhana (C), Heather Knight, Fran Wilson, Sophie Luff, Lizelle Lee (VC)
All-Rounders – Dane van Niekerk, Mady Villiers
Bowlers – Claire Nicholas, Anya Shrubsole, Laura Marsh
Claire Nicholas and Freya Davies play a key role in saving the credits for picking up costly players on both sides. If either of them is rested, one of Lizelle Lee and Natalie Sciver can’t be picked.
Western Storm is expected to extend their winning streak to 8 matches.
*Disclaimer: This team is based on the understanding, analysis and instinct of the author. While selecting your team, consider the points mentioned and make your own decision.
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