By Alex Bywater
Welsh Fire’s men’s and women’s sides had days to forget at Edgbaston on Monday as both teams were hammered by Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred.
But an immediate shot at redemption is on the cards with a trip to Southern Brave today (WEDS) offering a chance for the Cardiff-based outfits to bounce back.
Fire’s men’s head coach Gary Kirsten admitted he was hugely disappointed to see his team dispatched by the Phoenix by a mammoth 93 runs.
Chasing a huge 185 to win from their 100 balls, Fire were bowled out for just 91 as Phoenix bowler Imran Tahir finished the game with the first hat-trick of The Hundred.
Fire’s men’s team are now second bottom of the table with two games to play and their chances of reaching the knock-out stages are now very slim.
Kirsten said: “It is disappointing. We could have given a better account of ourselves and it wasn’t great.
“The guys bowled really well in the second half of our bowling stint but we never really got going with the bat.
“We felt 170 would have been a very gettable total and it was a great pitch, but we gave away 17 in the last set.
“We have lost early wickets in all our games except for the first two and that makes a big difference in building momentum. Then, in trying to keep up with the rate, we kept losing wickets.
“We need to give it our best shot now in the last two games and play like we did in the first two.
“There is still a lot to play for. If you end up with four wins then it doesn’t look too bad.
“It has been a good tournament and the quality has been really high.”
Welsh Fire’s women’s side has an identical record to their male compatriots of two wins and four losses from their six games so far.
Their result against the Phoenix was another shocker as they were beaten by 10 wickets.
The Edgbaston-based side chased down the Welsh total of 127 for nine from just 76 balls without loss.
Welsh Fire’s Sarah Taylor said: “It felt like we were 20 or 30 runs short and as the rain started coming down in their innings, the pitch got a little bit skiddier with the ball coming on to the bat which made it a challenge. We bowled it a little bit too full, but their two batters played very well.
“We have been really good in the field in the competition, but that was one of our worst games with the ball in a game where we needed to kick on and get those two points.
“It was a bad day at the office in a game we really needed to win.”