Embed from Getty Images

Don’t Worry, Skip! I’ve Got This . . . Welsh Fire’s Shabnim Ismail On Her Incredible Match-Winning Hat- Trick

All wales sports

By David Williams

“Don’t’ worry, I’ve got this,” said Shabnim Ismail to Welsh Fire women’s captain, Tammy Beaumont.

And she was right.

Ismail bowled Welsh Fire to a sensational victory with a hat-trick in the last three balls of the match to secure a three-run Women’s Hundred win over Birmingham Phoenix at Edgbaston.

Ismail’s ice-cool display prevented the home side scoring any of the four runs they needed to win from the last three balls, the South Africa international finishing with 3 for 31 as Phoenix, chasing 138, ended on 134 for 4 to suffer a heartbreaking defeat.

Beaumont’s stylish 59 from 40 balls lifted Fire to 137 for 7 but Phoenix looked in command of the chase as Tess Flintoff, with 55 off 45, and Amy Jones, who was unbeaten on 48 off 34, adding 93 in 67 balls.

But Ismail’s brilliant hat-trick leaves the Birmingham side with a lot of work to do to climb into the qualification race after a staccato first half of the campaign has brought two defeats and two washouts.

Phoenix chose to bowl but took 48 balls to break through as openers Beaumont and Hayley Matthews added 72 before the latter cut Hannah Baker to point.

Beaumont batted imperiously, dancing down the track to lift a gorgeous straight six off Katie Levick on the way to a 36-ball half-century. As well as the six, the captain struck nine fours but perished in pursuit of a tenth which she lifted Flintoff to deep mid-wicket, where Erin Burns took a fine catch stooping low to her right.

As Phoenix began to reel in the scoring rate, Laura Harris fell lbw, reverse-sweeping Emily Arlott. Sophia Dunkley (25 off 19 balls) stoked the Fire again with six over mid-wicket off Arlott but Phoenix built pressure and caught well in the closing sets.

Needing to pull off the sixth-biggest chase in Women’s Hundred history, Phoenix were positively launched by Sophie Devine’s 29 from 19 balls.

Her charge was ended by Alex Griffiths’ first ball, a perfect, inswinging yorker, but Jones was fluent from the moment she reached the crease.

Flintoff and Jones took their side into the last 20 balls with 27 needed but boundaries were few and Griffiths bowled beautifully to start tilting the pressure back on the home side.

It came down to nine needed from the last five balls, delivered by Ismail.

A glorious cover-driven four for Flintoff brought it down to four from three, but Ismail bowled the opener next ball, had Burns caught at short third and then bowled Issy Wong to seal the most memorable of wins.

“I was aiming to go yorker length and just try to bowl dot balls,” Ismail said. “The yorkers didn’t really come out today but it always does damage to take wickets so it worked out well.

“I had been in that position before so it was just a case of staying calm.

“There were no nerves from me, as I was previously in a situation like that. I didn’t want my nerves to get the better of me.

“I had to stay calm and I even told the captain to just stay calm. I said to her, ‘we’re going to win this game, don’t worry – I’ve got this’.”

All wales sports

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *