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Western Storm - there will be no let-up before the Finals Day

Western Storm
Western Storm
©Western Storm
 

There will be no let-up in Western Storm's intensity, despite the team's success in qualifying for the Kia Super League final.

Top of the table and in buoyant mood following a remarkable return of nine straight wins, Storm complete their regular season programme with a home game against Yorkshire Diamonds at Taunton's Cooper Associates Ground on Wednesday (6.30pm).

Despite their dominance and unassailable lead over nearest rivals Loughborough Lightning and Southern Vipers, the title favourites have no intention of taking things easy against Diamonds.

"We have to be ruthless," declared middle order batter Sophie Luff, who believes the best is still to come from a team that has swept all before it this summer.

"It would be a mistake to think that the job is done and that we can take it easy in the last game. Winning becomes a habit and it's a very good habit to have. We want to keep on winning and building momentum, because that will stand us in good stead for the final."

No side has emerged from the group stage unbeaten since the inception of KSL in 2016 and Luff and her team-mates are intent upon creating history.

She added: "This is the last year of KSL and we have an opportunity to create a record that will never be beaten. We are very proud of our record and there is a sense of making history that drives us on."

The first side to qualify for Finals Day in 2018, Storm were unable to maintain their momentum and fell away during the latter stages of the competition, eventually losing to Loughborough Lightning in the semi-final.

Luff recalls: "We began really well, went on a long winning run to qualify and then let things slip. Having lost momentum, we were unable to pick it up again and the tournament ended in disappointment for us.

"We are mindful of what happened last year and it is something we have spoken about as a group this summer. That's why it's important to play with the same intensity. Winning breeds confidence and we want to go to Finals Day in confident mood."

If Diamonds are to become the first side to defeat Storm in nine KSL matches at Taunton, they will have to raise their game and find considerable improvement.

Luff offered an ominous warning when she said: "We can still get better. Our performances have been consistent and good enough to win matches, but there is still room for improvement.

"We are still to put together the perfect, complete performance and that is something we are striving to do all the time. There are still things to work on before the final and competition for places is driving us on."

Western Storm (from): Mandhana, Priest, Knight, Wilson, Luff, Sharma, Dattani, Odedra, Griffiths, Shrubsole, Davies, Nicholas.