15th Match, Lord's, August 01, 2021, The Hundred Women's Competition

Brave won by 7 wickets (with 8 balls remaining)

Player Of The Match

Amanda-Jade Wellington the trump card as Southern Brave stay atop

London Spirit became the first team to be bowled out in the women's Hundred

Matt Roller
Matt Roller
Amanda-Jayne Wellington claimed figures of 4 for 14  •  Getty Images

Amanda-Jayne Wellington claimed figures of 4 for 14  •  Getty Images

Southern Brave 97 for 3 (Taylor 29*) beat London Spirit 93 (Beaumont 34, Wellington 4-14) by seven wickets
Amanda-Jade Wellington took 4 for 14 with her legbreaks to extend Southern Brave's 100 percent record as London Spirit became the first team to be bowled out in the women's Hundred in front of 15,189 fans at Lord's.
Wellington struck twice in as many balls in her second set of five, removing two of the Spirit's key batters in Heather Knight and Deepti Sharma. This forced them to rebuild through the middle phase of the innings. Tammy Beaumont struggled in trying to bat through and accelerate towards the end, but fell before she had the chance as Wellington returned to break her resistance. Spirit were eventually bundled out for 93.
The Brave were unconvincing in the run chase, with Sharma returning 2 for 10 from her 20 balls, including the key wickets of Smriti Mandhana and Sophia Dunkley. But Stafanie Taylor, who has scored 109 runs in the competition without being dismissed, saw her side home with a clinical 29 not out off 32 balls, with Maia Bouchier providing useful support from No. 5.
The attendance at Lord's was reported to be a record for a professional domestic women's match in the UK, beating the 13,537 at the ground for the Spirit's game against Oval Invincibles last weekend.
Wide, wide, wide Delilah
The Spirit's Powerplay was bizarre. They reached 30 for 1 after 25 balls either side of a brief rain delay, but managed only 10 runs off the bat - six of them when Beaumont picked Lauren Bell up over the leg side. Instead, two-thirds of their runs came through wides, with Anya Shrubsole, Tara Norris and Bell all struggling to control the swinging ball as they looked to cramp batters for room with straight lines.
There were 27 extras in all, 25 of them in wides, and Wellington admitted at the interval that it was "something we really need to work on as a bowling unit" - though with only one Spirit batter reaching double figures, it did not prove costly.
Wellington's wizardry
Wellington had a brief taste of international cricket in 2017-18 but has been on the outside of the Australia set-up in the last three years and has used the Hundred to pitch her case for a recall. Her 80 balls so far in the competition have cost only 59 runs, her flat legbreaks proving difficult to get away.
Her first act was to complete her second direct-hit run out of the week, a mirror image of her effort to remove Bryony Smith against Welsh Fire at Cardiff on Tuesday. Fielding at mid-on, her pick-up-and-throw left Naomi Dattani stranded short of her ground at the non-striker's end, giving the Brave their first wicket off the sixth ball of the innings.
With ball in hand, she struck twice in as many balls during her second set of five, with Knight chipping a legbreak to cover and Sharma stumped after over-balancing. She returned to bowl her final five balls at the death, and had Beaumont - her former Adelaide Strikers team-mate, whose 34 off 45 balls was uncharacteristically scratchy as she dropped anchor - caught at cover via a leading edge. Then she deceived Amara Carr by tossing one up above the eyeline and beating her with a sharp legbreak to leave Carla Rudd with a straightforward stumping.
"We came back really well to restrict them to under 100," she said. "I saw in the pitch there was a little bit of turn so I thought I'd vary my pace here and there and mix up my length. Hopefully I can continue this good form - I'm just really focusing on performing consistently for the team. We haven't really played the perfect match yet so hopefully we can make it to the end."
Taylor seals it
The Brave were never likely to be troubled by such a low target, but struggled to find a significant partnership to take them home. Sharma's flat offbreaks were particularly effective, while Charlotte Dean and Danielle Gibson were also miserly, but wickets were the order of the day and the Spirit managed only three of them.
The slow pitch did nothing to help the spectacle, with the Brave's batters regularly chipping the ball into gaps but finding boundaries hard to come by, with the Spirit sloppy in the field. Taylor cruised to 29 not out, rotating the strike at ease as Knight struggled to keep the squeeze on, and Bouchier's straight six - one of only two in the game - relieved any remaining scoring pressure.

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98

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