Man of the Match: Tammy Beaumont
Women's cricket returns after a long hiatus
Cricket has finally started to pick itself up after a lengthy hiatus due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Men’s cricket returned with the English summer and the women’s game will also be making a comeback in the country as it prepares to host West Indies for a five-match T20I series that will all be played at the same venue. The two teams played each other in the T20 World Cup in March during the group stage, a fixture that England won by a convincing margin on a dry and deteriorating surface. Conditions in Derby could be similar with the pitch expected to be slow due to the cricket played but again, the volume is considerably lesser due to the obvious coronavirus pandemic which put a stop to cricket for months across the globe. West Indies have a balanced squad that’s ideal for T20 cricket and this should potentially be a cracking contest between two well-matched sides. Rust is inevitable as they are coming after a large lay-off and the side that gets back to work quickly will get across the line.
The hosts may not boast of a complete squad like their opponents but England are a resourceful side with plenty of options in hand. In Danielle Wyatt and Natalie Sciver, they have two of the most explosive players in the world. Skipper Heather Knight on her day can be a severe threat as well while Tammy Beaumont’s prowess is known to all. There are many all-rounders here too, with Katherine Brunt being a classic example of developing a matchwinner across departments. The spin department is relatively scarce but Sophie Ecclestone is a world-class operator who knows to operate on different tracks with aplomb. Overall, England have an efficient squad and playing in home conditions will be a boost, as they know how to maximise these surfaces. The batting order should be the usual with Wyatt and Beaumont expected to open the batting, followed by Knight and Sciver in the middle order. Brunt is likely to be the floater for the side. They look like a side that’s more adept at chasing scores than setting ones.
Danielle Wyatt, Amy Ellen Jones (wk), Natalie Sciver, Heather Knight (c), Fran Wilson, Tammy Beaumont, Katherine Brunt, Anya Shrubsole, Mady Villiers, Sophie Ecclestone, Sarah Glenn
Sarah Glenn, Fran Wilson, Mady Villiers, Anya Shrubsole, Sophie Ecclestone, Amy Ellen Jones, Tammy Beaumont, Heather Knight, Natalie Sciver, Katherine Brunt, Danielle Wyatt
The presence of high-quality all-rounders led by skipper Stefanie Taylor is easily West Indies’ biggest strength. Unlike certain bits-and-pieces cricketers who are just utility with bat and ball, these are cricketers capable of turning games in either department. This gives immense balance and depth to the playing XI. Deandra Dottin and Hayley Mathews are powerhouse all-rounders, and along with Chinelle Henry form an enviable quartet. The pace-bowling department is also well served with a good mix of youth and experience. The bowling, in general, has a lot of variety in there and West Indies have the resources for all kinds of decks possible. Apart from the lack of match practice, there isn’t anything that can be said as a potential drawback for them, and they look fully capable of giving England a tough time in this series. West Indies love playing an aggressive brand of cricket, like their men’s team and adapting to conditions will be their biggest test, given that the pitches may be different from the ones that they encounter in the Caribbean. A lot of responsibility will be on Taylor and the seniors to guide the juniors.
H Mathews, D Dottin, S Taylor(c), S Campbelle (wk), C Nation, B Cooper, Lee-Ann Kirby, A Alleyne, A Fletcher, S Connell, S Selman
Afy Fletcher, Lee Ann Kirby, Shamilia Connell, Britney Cooper, Chinelle Henry, Deandra Dottin, Shakera Selman, Aaliyah Alleyne, Shemaine Campbelle, Hayley Matthews, Stafanie Taylor
|Hr||Temp||Rain||W. speed||W. direction||Clouds|
|00h||10||0 mm.||1.89 k/h||From: NE||11%|
|03h||9||0 mm.||1.35 k/h||From: NE||20%|
|06h||10||0 mm.||0.33 k/h||From: WSW||38%|
|09h||13||0 mm.||1.98 k/h||From: SW||70%|
|12h||19||0 mm.||2.69 k/h||From: W||48%|
|15h||21||0 mm.||3.41 k/h||From: WNW||0%|
|18h||16||0 mm.||2.15 k/h||From: WNW||0%|
|21h||14||0 mm.||1.36 k/h||From: WNW||0%|
The forecast is for a clear day with no chance of rain. Temperatures should be in the early 20s with high levels of humidity. The surface should be good to bat on but could be a bit on the slower side as well due to the amount of cricket played on it.
Primarily a limited-overs venue in international cricket, the County Ground has been host to a plethora of County games and domestic white-ball games.
Teams would want to bat first due to the slow nature of the deck and it could probably get slower as the game progresses. With no rain predicted, it makes more sense to put runs on the board.