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Women's Ashes 2023

Ashes 2023: Australia retain women’s Ashes in all-time classic after Nat Sciver-Brunt hundred goes in vain

by Patrick Ardill 5 minute read

Ashes 2023: Nat Sciver-Brunt’s epic hundred wasn’t enough to prevent Australia retaining the women’s Ashes, with England falling three runs short of a record ODI run-chase.

Ellyse Perry was the lynchpin of the Australian batting effort, making 91 in a total of 282. Her knock was bolstered by a devastating Georgia Wareham cameo which saw Lauren Bell smashed for 26 off the innings’ final over.

England’s chase was measured, and the target was never out of reach. Sciver-Brunt’s 111* off 99 deliveries was the key source of runs in the chase. With 15 needed off Jess Jonassen’s final over, England could only manage 11.


Australia have taken an 8-6 lead in the multi-format series, meaning England can only draw the series at Taunton on Tuesday. However, victory in the final ODI would consign Australia to their first series defeat in the format in a decade.

It was a game littered with ‘what-ifs’ and fine margins, and the English camp will rue dropped catches as key turning points in the game and the series as a whole – Perry was dropped by Sarah Glenn and Kate Cross in quick succession, while Ash Gardner (who made 33) was dropped by Sophie Ecclestone.

Perry’s innings was ably propped up by important contributions from Beth Mooney, Gardner, Annabel Sutherland and Wareham.

Wareham’s 37 off just 14 deliveries, including a 26-run final over – the second-most expensive over in women’s ODI cricket – ultimately put the total agonisingly out of reach.

Ecclestone finished with figures of 3-40, picking up her 19th wicket of the multi-format series.

Tammy Beaumont got the chase off to an assured start on her way to 60 from 62 deliveries, but Sophia Dunkley and Heather Knight faltered around her before she was dismissed with the score at 107-3.

Another flurry of wickets prompted a batting rebuild, in which Sciver-Brunt and wicketkeeper Amy Jones put on 57 runs for the sixth wicket, before the latter fell reverse-sweeping.

Sciver-Brunt brought up her sixth women’s ODI century in the 49th over, followed by a muted celebration that saw her helmet stay firmly atop her head. The task was still a daunting one, and the 30-year-old couldn’t quite get England over the line with a maximum needed from the game’s final delivery, or a boundary to take it to a super over.

Alana King was awarded Player of the Match for a tight spell of 3-44 from her 10 overs, in an innings where Australia’s spin options got the better of England’s star batters.

Speaking afterwards, skipper Heather Knight declared the 2023 women’s Ashes as “the best series ever in women’s cricket”, and looked ahead to Taunton where England could win the ODIs and draw the series – for the first time in the Ashes since 2017/18.

You can bet on the 2023 Ashes with our Match Centre partners, bet365.

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