Southern Vipers 118 for 3 (Wyatt 50) beat The Blaze 114 for 8 (Adams 2-20, Dean 2-21, Shrubsole 2-24) by seven wickets
Danni Wyatt backed up her semi-final heroics with another blisteringly quick half-century, as Southern Vipers condemned The Blaze to their first defeat of the season across formats, to complete an emphatic defence of their Charlotte Edwards Cup title at New Road.
In a contest that stretched into the reserve day following torrential afternoon rain on Saturday, The Blaze limped from their overnight 53 for 4 in 9.3 overs to a sub-par total of 114 for 8 in 20. Shrubsole, who confirmed her retirement at the conclusion of the contest, was duly named Player of the Match after her two early wickets had proven key in denying the tournament pace-makers any chance to set a more imposing total.
Their ambitions were blighted on the resumption by the offspin of Charlie Dean, who struck with her first delivery of the day as Sarah Glenn lofted a drive down the throat of long-off for 7, before the dangerous Nadine de Klerk gave herself too much room on the cut and lost her off stump for a run-a-ball 14.
At 95 for 6 after 17 overs, The Blaze would have gladly settled for a run-a-ball total of 120, but Vipers' skipper Georgia Adams denied them any late momentum as Sophie Munro was bowled first-ball for a duck. Mary Taylor bowled her solitary over of the final to close out the innings, picking off Lucy Higham with a slower ball to leave the contest very much in her team's hands at the interval.
Seeing as the Vipers opening pair of Wyatt and Maia Bouchier had racked up an imposing opening stand of 108 in 11 overs against Thunder on Saturday, a target of 115 in 20 scarcely seemed daunting. And sure enough, they clattered off in pursuit of victory, posting 67 inside the first seven overs before Bouchier drove too loosely at Sarah Glenn to be bowled for 25 from 20.
By then, however, Wyatt was firmly into her stride, as she cracked along to a 27-ball fifty with 10 fours, including six from her first seven legal deliveries. De Klerk skidded one into an attempted pull to trap her lbw with 26 still needed, and though Ella McCaughan was stumped off Higham before victory was completed, Adams sealed the deal with back-to-back fours, with 34 balls left unused.
An emphatic victory had seemed on the cards even when play had to be suspended on Saturday afternoon, when The Blaze had struggled to 53 for four in 9.3 overs after choosing to bat first, before lightning in the area took the teams off at 4:35pm.
Play was officially abandoned at just after 6pm, following torrential rain, with the decision made to come back on Sunday for the reserve day -bad news for some of the Vipers players who had been due to take advantage of the short break in the season by taking a holiday.
In the 57 balls possible before the storm breezed in, former England fast bowler Shrubsole pinned her former international team-mate Tammy Beaumont lbw with a trademark inswinger with the third ball of the innings.
She then found Sarah Bryce swinging straight up into the air in the following over as The Blaze slumped to 19 for two, and only reached 34 for two by the end of the powerplay.
Spinners Lauren Smith and Georgia Adams then put the batting side into more trouble, with Georgie Boyce caught behind with one that popped, and Kathryn Bryce was bowled through the gate.
The Vipers had earlier won their Eliminator against Thunder by 18 runs after half-centuries from Wyatt and Bouchier - with Thunder coming up short in the chase of 191.
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