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Surrey Stars captain Nat Sciver wants to keep momentum ahead of game against Southern Vipers - Kia Super league

Surrey Stars huddle
Surrey Stars huddle

Surrey Stars captain Nat Sciver expects a stern test of their unbeaten record when they return to the Oval for the first time in this year’s Kia Super League on Monday.

Having beaten Yorkshire Diamonds and Lancashire Thunder, the Stars face Southern Vipers (6.30pm) in what should be one of the games of the tournament with Vipers also boasting two wins from their first two.

“The tournament has been brilliant for us so far,” said Sciver. “On Thursday (against Lancashire) the first half of the game didn’t go as planned, but we managed to drag it back in their innings and use our bowlers effectively.”

Stars won that game by eight wickets with 34 balls to spare and Sciver was pleased that her team improved on their nine-run win over Yorkshire on opening night.

“We did improve our batting after the first game so that’s encouraging,” she said. “We managed to get a partnership between Lizelle Lee and Sarah Taylor going at Guildford and we achieved our target of having a set batter in at the end. But we know there are always areas we can still work on.”

Monday night will be Surrey’s only match at the Kia Oval this year and it’s an occasion they are looking forward to.

“It’s really good playing there,” said Sciver. “Hopefully we can get lots of kids down to watch, and make sure we make it about the family feel.

“Playing at the Oval is a bit different to playing at Guildford - the outfield is so quick. Playing there is something we’ve done quite a lot, and hopefully we can draw on those experiences to play the best that we can.”

Sciver expects their opponents to be inspired by the surroundings too. Vipers finished bottom of the table last year, but new captain Tammy Beaumont had led them to two wins ahead of Sunday’s home game against Western Storm. 

She added: “Vipers have got some world-class players. Tammy [Beaumont] and Danni [Wyatt] are great in T20 cricket and can take the game away from you, as can Suzie Bates, so they have got a strong line-up. But hopefully we can use our wicket-taking bowlers to stop them in their tracks.

“They’ve added Issy Wong, who can bowl with a lot of pace. The Guildford pitch was pretty slow last week so we may have to adapt to conditions.

“We just want to make sure we keep our momentum going. Last year we lost four out of our first five games but won the tournament so I don’t think it matters if you can get on a roll with your form.”

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