England women take series to decider
England Women 216 for 6 (Taylor 116) beat Australia Women 215 for 5 (Keightley 78, Rolton 54) by four wickets
Following their Ashes series triumph England have taken their one-day series against Australia to a deciding match after a superbly timed four-wicket win at Taunton. They were led by a century from Claire Taylor and chasing 216 reached their target with nine balls to spare.
Taylor allowed England to recover from the early loss of Charlotte Edwards and was well supported with three useful partnerships. Laura Newton helped her add 65 for the second wicket and then Arran Brindle combined to put on 61 for the fourth. But when Brindle was caught behind off Karen Rolton England still needed another substantial partnership to see them towards the target.
Jenny Gunn provided the perfect foil for Taylor - who was now well into her stride - and the pair's fifth wicket stand accrued 65 priceless runs. Although both fell with the target in sight they had done enough and England had breathing space when the winning runs came. After not beating the Australians in ODIs since 1993 they have now done it twice in two matches.
Australia's competitive total was based around a second wicket stand of 115 between Rolton and Laura Keightley. Keightley's 78 held the innings together as she faced 129 balls and struck nine boundaries. Rolton was the aggressor, with her 54 taking 72 deliveries, and the innings was given a final flourish through a rapid stand of 37 between Carthryn Fitzpatrick and Alex Blackwell.
But Taunton is known as one of the best batting strips, and fastest scoring grounds in the country, and England took advantage of the conditions to leave this Anglo-Australian contest heading for a deciding match on Thursday.