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Marie Kelly stars as Northern Superchargers beat Welsh Fire by 16 runs

22 Aug 2023 3 minute read
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Northern Superchargers defeated Welsh Fire by 16 runs to ensure they went into this weekend’s The Hundred play-offs in good form.

Marie Kelly’s unbeaten 69 set the stage for the home side’s 144 for four and the Fire struggled in pursuit after losing the key wickets of Tammy Beaumont and Hayley Matthews before they had scored.

Laura Harris and Sophia Dunkley put up a strong fight, helping Fire to 128 for eight, but the Superchargers were relentless in their wicket-taking to give them an outside chance of progressing straight through to Sunday’s women’s final.

The Superchargers will need leaders Southern Brave to suffer a wide-margin defeat at Manchester Originals on Wednesday to open the door for them to go straight to Lord’s, with a rematch Eliminator against Fire the most likely scenario at the Kia Oval on Saturday.

Superchargers got off to an aggressively good start, as Kelly put on a wonderful performance to ensure a strong powerplay.

Kelly was supported by Phoebe Litchfield’s classy and innovative 40 off 26 balls, the Australian highlighting her hitting with a reverse slog over cover for six.

The retiring Alex Hartley, Freya Davies, Dunkley and Claire Nicholas – who took a brilliant catch to dismiss Litchfield – all claimed a wicket apiece.


Dunkley gave Fire their breakthrough wicket, taking a stunning catch off her own bowling when Jemimah Rodrigues tried to take on the leg spinner but knocked the ball straight back.

Although Fire had already made scores of 165, 144, 181 and 161 in the competition so far – those had all come from having batted first – and their task became more complicated when the Superchargers struck gold with two early wickets.

Most notably the in-form Beaumont, a leading runscorer for Welsh Fire, was caught by Kate Cross off Lucy Higham. In the next set Matthews was then caught by Litchfield off Cross.

Welsh Fire gained ground as Australian batter Laura Harris put on a striking performance with a steady 37, edging the visitors towards that 145 total needed to win.

However, another breakthrough wicket was swiftly taken again as Cross bowled Harris, and Dunkley followed not far behind, going for 29 runs off 22 balls, when Kelly held on to a catch off Alice Davidson-Richards.

Grace Ballinger also put in a strong performance as she took the wickets of Sarah Bryce and Alex Griffiths as the hosts ensured they would head to London with winning form.

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