Heather Knight all-round brilliance sinks Pakistan Women
England Women 166-3 (Beaumont 70) beat
Pakistan Women 165 (Knight 5-26) by seven wickets
First One-Day International, Leicester
Heather Knight took a five-wicket haul to bowl Pakistan Women out for 165 runs and followed it up with an unbeaten fifty on her captaincy debut as England Women secured a seven-wicket victory by chasing down the target in 31.5 overs in the first One-Day International in Leicester.
England won the toss and opted to bowl first. Pakistan lost Javeria Khan (7) in the sixth over as Katherine Brunt (2-24) became the fourth England bowler to take 100 wickets in the format.
Sidra Ameen (52) batted well at one end but England continued to chip away from the other end as Bismah Maroof (13) and Nain Abidi (10) fell in the space of three overs.
Ameen struck eight boundaries in her 122-minute stay at the crease but in the 32nd over she chipped a return catch to Knight (5-26), but not before she completed a fifty.
Handy knocks from Nida Dar (18), Sidra Nawaz (12) and Asmavia Iqbal (22) helped Pakistan reach 165 before being bowled out in 45.4 overs. The last two Pakistan wickets fell to Knight as she completed a five-wicket haul.
England lost Lauren Winfield (0) to the very first ball of the chase and soon after, in the sixth over, Georgia Elwiss (12) also departed, leaving England at 33 for two.
The innings was put back on track thanks to a 96-run stand between Tammy Beaumont (70) and Knight (50 not out). The pair batted for a total of 20 overs in their partnership for the third wicket and scored at just under five runs an over.
Beaumont was the first to reach her half-century, taking just 57 balls to get to the landmark for the first time in ODIs. At the halfway mark, England needed just 42 runs with eight wickets in hand.
Beaumont fell in the 26th over but Knight calmly completed her fifty and along with Natalie Scriver (27 not out), she stayed unbeaten to give England a seven-wicket win in 31.5 overs.
Knight, who became the first women cricketer to hit a fifty and take five wickets in an ODI, was adjudged as the player of the match.
This win has taken England to fourth spot in the ICC Women’s Championship standings.
© Cricket World 2016