Manchester Originals’ Sophie Ecclestone was once again on target as she helped England to a six-wicket victory over South Africa in a rain-shortened warm-up game for the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022.
The sun then shone as England reduced South Africa to 139-7 from 35 overs with Ecclestone claiming 3-23.
Tammy Beaumont then top-scored with 35 as England chase the target down with 8.4 overs to spare to see England go in undefeated on New Zealand soil ahead of their opening group match against Australia on Saturday.
Rain stopped any chance of play before 1:50pm, but once the teams got underway, England made quick work of South Africa’s top order as Katherine Brunt bowled Laura Wolvaardt in a maiden over.
Anya Shrubsole then got Lara Goodall caught behind before producing her own wicket maiden as Sune Luus went for a duck, unable to add to the 86 she made against India as South Africa slipped to three for 19.
Mignon du Preez would fall not long after before Tazmin Brits gave Ecclestone her first wicket and the World No.2 side were five down having made only 47.
Chloe Tryon and Marizanne Kapp combined for a 65-run partnership as Kapp went on to make 52 from 60 balls, the last of South Africa’s nine dismissals to set England a modest chase of 139.
In reply, Beaumont and Lauren Winfield-Hill added 26 for the first wicket before captain Heather Knight came in to make five from 16 deliveries.
Beaumont eased her way to 35 from 45 prior to being dismissed with a misjudged attempt at a drive down the ground.
Nat Sciver reached 33 not out before making way to give Danni Wyatt time in the middle, Wyatt was there to hit the winning runs alongside Sophia Dunkley as England chased the 138 down with 8.4 overs to spare.
Sciver was back out alongside Amy Jones for a practice super over, with an unlimited number of super overs possible during the World Cup in New Zealand.
The all-rounder was out first ball attempting a ramp shot before Jones made 9 not out alongside Dunkley to set South Africa 11 to win.
Tryon followed Sciver in producing a first-ball duck as Ecclestone kept Laura Wolvaardt and Brits to singles and a two to see England win by four runs.
England will now fly from Christchurch to Hamilton as they face Australia on Saturday 1am GMT in their opening match of the Women’s Cricket World Cup.
© ICC Business Corporation FZ LLC 2022
England beat South Africa at Bert Sutcliffe Oval, Lincoln by six wickets
South Africa 138/9 in 35 overs (Marizanne Kapp 52, Chloe Tryon 27; Sophie Ecclestone 3/23, Anya Shrubsole 2/18)
England 139/4 in 26.2 overs (Tammy Beaumont 35, Nat Sciver 33; Ayabonga Khaka 2/8; Masabata Klaas 1/19