Scotland Women opener Lorna Jack's 60 off 48 balls powered the hosts to a seven-wicket win over a hapless Netherlands bowling unit in the opening match of the 2017 ICC Europe/Americas Women's World T20 Qualifier in Scotland
By Peter Della Penna in Stirling, Scotland
Opener Lorna Jack struck her maiden fifty for Scotland while feasting on a wretched Dutch bowling display to help the tournament hosts romp to a seven-wicket win with 28 balls to spare on Tuesday at the 2017 ICC Europe/Americas T20 World Cup Qualifier in Stirling. Jack struck six fours in her 60 off 48 balls before she was bowled behind her legs missing a sweep but by that stage she had taken Scotland to within one shot of securing an impressive win.
Jack and Kathryn Bryce teamed for a 72-run opening stand in less than nine overs in pursuit of the Dutch first innings total of 112 for 5. Netherlands captain Heather Siegers struggled to find an answer to contain the Scotland opening pair, cycling through seven bowlers in the first eight overs.
Scotland had made a relatively modest start to the chase reaching 19 for 0 in three overs before the flood gates opened in the fourth as legspinner Caroline de Lange struggled for control, sending down a series of full tosses whipped for four by Jack. Medium pacer Esther Corder fared little better in the seventh, leaking another two boundaries through point to Jack.
Bryce eventually fell on the fifth ball of the ninth over to end the opening stand, caught at point unable to control a cut off Robine Rijke for 21. She was replaced at the crease by her sister Sarah, who provided good support with efficient running between the wickets to get Jack on strike as often as possible during a brisk 31-run stand. The younger Bryce fell in the 14th, driving to cover off Siegers with 10 left to win. Jack fell an over later but Becky Glen cracked a four over mid-on and a single behind point off the first two balls of the 16th to clinch victory.
Scotland’s surprisingly easy chase was set up by a disciplined bowling effort in which they contained Netherlands to 39 off the first 10 overs. Katie McGill set the tone with a maiden to begin proceedings, exploiting spongy bounce on a pitch that had spent much of the past two days under covers due to persistent rain. McGill struck the first blow for Scotland in the third as Sterre Kalis failed to get bat on bat after a charge down the pitch and was stumped for 3.
Netherlands only managed 21 in the Powerplay and lost their second wicket at the 10 over mark, Babette de Leede caught at point by Lois Wilkinson off Samantha Haggo’s medium pace for 19. Cher van Slobbe labored through her innings to score 22 off 36 runs, chewing up 25 dot balls in the process, before she edged behind a swipe to Wilkinson’s offspin to make it 53 for 3 in the 13th.
The run rate picked up with the arrival of Helmien Rambaldo, who teamed with captain Siegers, for a 33-run stand in just 4.3 overs. Siegers finished with 25 off 18 before she fell to end the 17th, bowled by Wilkinson after being beaten in flight wandering down the pitch. Rambaldo took the Dutch past 100 and eventually finished unbeaten on 32 off 24 with four boundaries but despite her strong surge at the end of the innings, the poor start at the top doomed the visitors to defeat.
Scotland return to play USA on Wednesday morning before USA is set to play the Dutch in the afternoon in a pair of games rescheduled after washouts from Monday and Tuesday. If rain forces either game to be abandoned, the teams will split points before the second round is scheduled to begin on Thursday when USA will have another doubleheader on tap.