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The final of the England Tri-Nation T20 Women’s Series 2018 is going to be played between the hosts England and New Zealand. We think it is fair to say that the best two sides of the tournament made it into the finals. England won three out of its four matches while New Zealand won two out of its four. Interestingly, though, New Zealand has so far lost both its matches against England with ease.
Can New Zealand find that extra gear which will allow them to push England? Or will England, the clear favorites, just roll over New Zealand for the third time in this series?
There is no doubt in our mind that this England side will rank among the best ever women’s sides to have played cricket. They are pushing the boundaries of what people thought possible and playing with an incredible amount of consistency. In fact, beating this England side is not going to be an easy task at any time, although, that does not mean they cannot slip up.
This series has been brilliant for Tammy Beaumont who leads the run-scoring charts with 221 runs. She has also had some very good support from Nate Sciver, Heather Knight, Sarah Taylor, and Danny Wyatt. This batting lineup is very strong and seems to have no trouble facing the New Zealand bowlers.
The first time that England faced New Zealand in the series, it scored 172 and then chased down 130 with ease in the second match. The brief for the batters would be to continue to do what they have been doing so far and not worry about anything else.
There is a fear of complacency, though, since England is facing a pretty strong batting side as well. If England bats first and scores a par total or thereabouts then it could get close.
Doing the job so far for England in matches against New Zealand has been its batting. The New Zealander’s who have batted quite well against South Africa have struggled massively against England.
Anya Shrubsole and Ecclestone have been outstanding for England in this series but the other bowlers have shared in the wickets as well. Brunt has 4, Hazell has 4, while Knight, Farrant, and Sciver all have two wickets to their name as well.
There is plenty of confidence in this side, and perhaps, more importantly, they seem to have the pulse of this New Zealand side. England will go into this contest as well deserved favorites.
Danielle Wyatt, Tammy Beaumont, Sarah Taylor, Natalie Sciver, Heather Knight, Amy Ellen Jones, Katherine Brunt, Anya Shrubsole, Sophie Ecclestone, Katie George, Danielle Hazell.
The New Zealand women must be wondering what happens to them when they play against England. From scoring record-breaking totals against South Africa, New Zealand falls to low totals and collapses against England.
For a batting side that has two players with over 200 runs in the series, it is scary to see that no one else apart from those two has even scored 50 runs. That puts enormous pressure on Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine.
England will know that if they can get one or both of these players out cheaply then the rest of the batting is very vulnerable.
From a New Zealand point of view, they must hope for one of those days where both Devine and Bates fire in tandem. If that happens then no total is safe and New Zealand can set an imposing task for England’s strong batting lineup.
It is, however, extremely risky to put your faith in only two players all the time.
Players like Martin, Satterthwaite, Green, and Kerr need to step up and take more responsibility in the finals. New Zealand insists on playing Kerr down the order but we believe she has the game to bat far higher up and create a lot of problems for the opposition.
New Zealand will also have to come up against some innovative ideas to disrupt the England batters. For two matches now, New Zealand has thrown everything at them for no reward. They must try to push the England batters out of their comfort zone in the finals or this will become a one-sided affair quickly.
The bowling has to be led by Watkin, Kerr, and Devine. Kerr, we believe, can be the X factor but for that New Zealand has to be willing to take some risks. Get her to bowl in the powerplay and give her some attacking fielders.
South Africa showed in one match that England's strong batting can be tamed by picking regular wickets. It is the only way that New Zealand can win this match because outscoring England is an extremely tough task.
Sophie Devine, Suzie Bates, Katey Martin, Amy Satterthwaite, Maddy Green, Amelia Kerr, Anna Peterson, Jess Watkin, Leigh Kasperek, Hayley Jensen, Lea Tahuhu.
The team winning the toss is likely to bat first
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Sunny weather with almost no chance of rain has been forecast for this match. We are certain that we should be able to get a full game in. The pitch at Chelmsford is expected to be flat and good for batting. Early reports suggest that this could be the best batting pitch we have seen in the series and that would favor the home team for sure.
A par total looks to be around 170.
England women have now beaten the New Zealand women in four out of the last five t20 matches they have played against each other. The manner of the wins has been very comprehensive, especially in this series. New Zealand, though, is not to be taken lightly as it has two of the best batters in the world playing for it.
A better-balanced side and the benefit of home conditions make us favor England in this contest.
Back England to win.
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