BASSETERRE, St.Kitts – Mission accomplished!
West Indies Women completed a 4-0 One-Day International whitewash of New Zealand Women today when they won a thriller by four runs at Warner Park in St Kitts.
The White Ferns’ captain Suzie Bates won the toss and inserted the Merissa Aguilleira-led Windies who were restricted to 214 for 8 in their 50 overs. In response, the Kiwis squandered an opening century partnership between Bates and Rachel Priest and were dismissed in the 50th over for 210 to ignite wild celebrations on the field by the Windies Women.
The victory was particularly sweet for the West Indies and marked an about-turn of major proportions from the start of the year. West Indies Women had travelled to New Zealand in February for three ODIs and five Twenty20 Internationals and were soundly beaten in every completed match, losing the ODIs 3-0 and the T20Is 4-0 with one no-result. But with Deandra Dottin back in the line-up after serving a disciplinary suspension, it was a different team that confronted New Zealand in this series.
Today chasing 215 for victory, New Zealand Women looked the likely winners when Priest who top-scored
with 74 and Bates who struck 68, combined for an opening stand of 114.
They were still cruising at 176 for two in the 39th over when off-spinner Anisa Mohammed intervened, grabbing four for 41 while seamer Shakera Selman took two for 34, as the visitors lost their last eight wickets for 34 runs.
With New Zealand Women requiring nine runs from the last two overs, Dottin, bowling medium pace, sent down an over that cost just two runs and which included the wicket of Priest, holing out to deep mid-wicket off the fifth ball of the over.
Entrusted with the last over with New Zealand Women needing seven runs to win, Selman delivered a brilliant over. She held Holly Huddleston scoreless off the first two deliveries before bowling her with the third, as the batter swung and missed.
Georgia Guy gathered a couple square of the wicket first ball she faced but then Morna Nielson charged down the wicket for a non-existent single off the fifth delivery, and found herself stranded after Guy failed to respond and Selman effected the run-out
That wicket sealed a superb come-from-behind victory for West Indies Women.
Stafanie Taylor, batting at number three, top-scored with 66 from 84 balls, with seven fours and a six, while Kycia Knight hit 39 and Natasha McLean, 36, in putting on 58 for the first wicket.
When McLean skied off-spinner Guy to long-on in the 12th over, Taylor and Knight put on 53 for the second wicket to put the innings back on course.
Shanel Daley chipped in with an unbeaten 29 down the order to rally the tail. Guy picked up three for 23 while left-armer Nielsen took two for 27.
West Indies Women seemed destined to lose the game when Priest and Bates were involved in their century stand.
Priest faced 137 balls and struck eight fours while Bates counted eight fours and a six off 75 deliveries, before the skipper holed out to long-off in the 25th over, to give Mohammed her first wicket.
With three runs added in Mohammed’s next over, Amy Satterthwaite top-edged a sweep and was taken at slip by Taylor, for one.
Priest and Sophie Devine, who scored 31 from 43 balls with two fours and two sixes, added 59 for the third wicket to revive their side’s hopes.
Devine seemed to be accelerating New Zealand Women to victory when she cleared the ropes in successive overs off 18-year-old leg-spinner Shaquana Quintyne and then Mohammed. However, she fell to a soft dismissal in the 39th over, driving a full toss from Mohammed to Britney Cooper at cover.
West Indies Women then kept their nerve to edge the Kiwis.
Mohammed was named Player of the Match, as well as Player of the Series for her 12 wickets. Mohammed also became the first West Indian woman to 100 ODI wickets during the series.
Dottin was West Indies Women’s leading batter during the series scoring 176 runs at an average of 88, while Taylor chipped in with 159 runs at an average of 53.
The teams start their International Twenty20 series on Tuesday at Arnos Vale, Kingstown, St Vincent.
West Indies Women
(214 for 8 – 50 Overs) Stafanie Taylor 66, Kycia Knight 39, Natasha McLean 36, Shanel Daley 29 not out; Georgia Guy 10-0-23-3, Morna Nielsen 10-2-27-2, Holly Huddleston
8-1-42-1, Maddie Green 5-0-30-1.
New Zealand Women (210 all out – 49.4 Overs) Rachel Priest+ 74, Suzie Bates 68, Sophie Devine 31, Sara McGlashan 11; Anisa Mohammed 10-2-41-4, Shakera Selman 5.4-0-34-2, Shaquana Quintyne 10-1-27-1, Deandra Dottin 4-0-25-1.