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England, South Africa ignore auction distractions and gain key wins

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England and South Africa overcame the distractions of a player auction in India and pulled off important wins on the fourth day of the Women’s T20 World Cup at Boland Park in Paarl.

England and South Africa overcame the distractions of a player auction in India and pulled off important wins on the fourth day of the Women’s T20 World Cup at Boland Park in Paarl.

England took command of Group Two, beating Ireland by four wickets to notch their second successive win, while South Africa played themselves back into contention in Group One with a 65-run win over New Zealand.

Monday’s double-header was played while the auction in India’s Women’s Premier League was being held in Mumbai, with potential life-changing deals for players from both teams, as well as those from New Zealand.

England captain Heather Knight said her players were able to focus on the cricket. She said they left their hotel in Cape Town while hearing shouts of excitement from Indian players who were the main focus of bidders from Indian franchises.

“Whatever happens in the IPL doesn’t affect the value of the players in our team,” she said.

Left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone showed why she was bought by the Uttar Pradesh Warriorz franchise for the equivalent of about US$220 000 when she sparked an Ireland collapse to 105 all out. Ecclestone took three for 13.

Another WPL target, Alice Capsey, bought by Delhi Capitals for $91 000, set up an early finish by hitting 51 off 22 balls in England’s reply.

Nat Sciver-Brunt, who attracted the joint-highest price for an overseas player, had a quiet day, bowling two overs which cost ten runs and being dismissed for five. She was bought by Mumbai Indians for $390 000.

“She probably won’t like all the attention,” said Knight. “She’s very humble. She’s just very good at cricket.”

England and South Africa overcame the distractions of a player auction in India and pulled off important wins on the fourth day of the Women’s T20 World Cup at Boland Park in Paarl.

England and South Africa overcame the distractions of a player auction in India and pulled off important wins on the fourth day of the Women’s T20 World Cup at Boland Park in Paarl.

Knight herself was unsold in early bidding but was later picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore for $49 000. She only found out after the match.

“I’m looking forward to it but my focus now is on captaining England in the World Cup,” she said.

Most of South Africa’s players went unsold but vice-captain Chloe Tryon, who was the team’s match-winner against New Zealand with 40 runs and two wickets, was bought by the Mumbai Indians for $37 000.

Fellow all-rounder Marizanne Kapp secured a $183 000 deal from Delhi Capitals. Her wife, Dane van Niekerk, who was controversially omitted from the World Cup squad on fitness grounds, was bought by Royal Challengers Bangalore for $37 000.

Fast bowler Shabnim Ismail was the only other South African to be signed up, with UP Warriorz gaining her services for $122 000.

“I didn’t feel I needed to watch it,” Tryon said about the auction. “I didn’t want to think about it, although someone told me about it. I wanted to concentrate on the game.”

“It was do or die,” Tryon said of the New Zealand match.

South Africa struggled to 132 for six in their 20 overs but bowled out New Zealand for 67.

Left-arm spinner Nonkululeko Mlaba struck twice in the first three overs of New Zealand’s innings and the White Ferns were unable to recover. It was effectively a must-win game for both teams after they both lost their opening games.

Mlaba finished with three for ten in her four overs – her best figures in T20 internationals.

AFP

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