Pakistan women lose ODI series opener to England in Derby

The visitors failed to chase a 244-run target

By Web Desk
May 24, 2024
The bowlers managed to restrict the home side to 243/9 after opting to bowl. - PCB

Pakistan women's team lost to England in the ODI series opener in Derby after the visitors failed to chase a 244-run target.

Pakistan bowlers managed to restrict the home side to 243/9 after opting to bowl first as skipper Nida Dar's three wickets led the charge.

In pursuit of 244 runs to win, Pakistan concluded their innings at 206 for nine, with spinners Sophie Ecclestone (3/26) and Charlie Dean (2/39) tilting the match in England's favour.

Ecclestone edged closer to claiming the record for the fastest to reach three figures in women’s ODI cricket, but she needs to accomplish this feat in the second game of the series on Sunday to surpass Australia’s Cathryn Fitzpatrick.

Pakistan were comfortably positioned at 149 for four in the 35th over, but the collapse of five wickets for 29 runs within seven overs dashed their hopes.

Sadaf Shamas, Muneeba Ali, and captain Nida Dar laid decent foundations as Pakistan aimed for their first-ever ODI victory over England in their 13th attempt.

The visiting team also benefited from some erratic England bowling, with an astonishing 31 wides contributing to a record total of 40 extras, alongside two rare missed catches behind the stumps by Amy Jones.

However, Lauren Bell (two for 31) managed to extract movement from the pitch to make breakthroughs at the start of the innings, while Ecclestone and Dean tightened the screws before Kate Cross secured a couple of late wickets.

Invited to bat, England posted 243 for nine from their 50 overs. Maia Bouchier scored 17 before being dismissed by Nashra Sandhu, and fellow opener Tammy Beaumont was out for 33 as Umm-e-Hani successfully appealed for lbw.

Captain Heather Knight survived two dropped catches by Hani, on zero and 18, but was eventually out for 29 as wicket-keeper Najiha Alvi caught her attempt to cut off Aliya Riaz.

With Nat Sciver-Brunt, who had an impressive average of 80 against Pakistan, falling for 31 caught behind off Riaz, England were 118 for four and in need of stability at the midway point.

This stability came in the form of a skilful partnership of 67 between Alice Capsey and Jones, with Jones contributing 37 from 38 balls.

Teenager Capsey displayed maturity beyond her years, scoring an ODI-best 44 following a string of low scores in this format.

Dean contributed a useful 20 as Fatima Sana's drop in the final over, the fourth of the innings, prevented Pakistan from bowling out England for the first time in a one-day game.