Deandra Dottin, Hayley Matthews show in vain as rain ends series opener in stalemate

Shajin Mohanan S
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Deandra Dottin, Hayley Matthews show in vain as rain ends series opener in stalemate

Deandra Dottin (L) and Hayley Matthews (R) © PCB

Deandra Dottin hit a magnificent ton to make her career-best score in ODIs and shared a record-breaking partnership with Hayley Matthews to help West Indies post a daunting total in the first ODI of the four-match series at the Wanderers in Johannesburg. With multiple rain delays, South Africa eventually had a narrow escape with the match being called off with them reeling at 87 for five in 17.5 overs chasing 204 runs from 29 overs in a DLS revised target.

Put into bat, West Indies didn’t have the greatest of starts as they lost Rashada Williams for just one with Shabnim Ismail accounting for her. Only 12 runs came from the first seven overs. Dottin finally broke the shackles with two boundaries of Ayabonga Khaka in the eighth over and backed it up with another four in the next over.

But Khaka came back with the wicket of Kycia Knight in her second over leaving West Indies struggling at 27 for two. However, Dottin was in no mood to stop as she added two more fours off Khaka. Ismail, who bowled an enviable five-over spell that read 5-2-3-1, went for two boundaries in her sixth over and it was looking like Dottin and Stafanie Taylor would take West Indies to safety.

In the 18th over, disaster struck for West Indies as Taylor was hit on the wrist when a hard drive from Dottin came back at her. The West Indies skipper retired hurt and didn’t return to bat in the innings as the medical decided to rest her for the rest of the match.

That brought Matthews to the crease and the duo of Dottin and Matthews built on their recent form in the format with some explosive cricket. Matthews didn’t waste any time and started her knock with two boundaries in the first three balls she faced off Chloe Tryon.

Once she reached her fifty from 68 balls, Dottin cut loose, smashing Khaka for a six before doubling down against Nonkululeko Mlaba. Sune Luus kept it tight from the other end with her leg spin, but other bowlers came for severe punishment from both the batters. One more six and a few singles later Dottin brought up her third ODI century off 113 balls with 11 fours and four maximums to her name.

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The pair continued the assault on the South Africa attack – in the absence of Marizanne Kapp - bowled either too full or erred on both sides of the wicket providing them with width. A rain break in between didn’t break their momentum as they went past the 100-run stand. Once they returned, Matthews took only 59 balls to reach her eighth fifty in the format.

South Africa finally found a breakthrough in the 44th over when Matthews was caught on the boundary by Tryon off Klaas to end the stand on 153 runs. But by then, she and Dottin made the highest third wicket partnership in their name going past Kyshona Knight and Taylor – they scored 142 runs against Pakistan last year.

Despite losing her partner, Dottin kept going and added more runs to her career-best score reaching her maiden 150 in the process. She found time just enough to loft one through the off-side before the rain arrived yet again, ending West Indies innings on 234 for three in the 46th over.

For South Africa, Ismail returned with impressive figures of 24 for one from her eight overs, while Luus was frugal as well giving away only 29 runs as she completed her ten-over spell.

After a long rain delay, South Africa came out to chase a revised target of 204 runs from 29 overs with DLS coming into play. Although they started the first over well with nine runs coming off it, they soon found themselves in trouble losing the big wicket of Laura Wolvaardt. Shamilia Connell got one to comeback to castle the right-hander.

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Meanwhile, Brits found some boundaries with Lara Goodall struggling at the other end. Brits hit Shakera Selman for a huge six over long-on before Goodall smashed couple of boundaries off Chinelle Henry to finally make a move.

However, introduction of Matthews brought immediate reward for the visitors with Goodall playing across a straight one, only to lose her stumps. The off-spinning allrounder’s day only got better when she sent Brits back to the pavilion for 33 with Chedean Nation taking a fumbling catch at the boundary. South Africa were reeling at 66 for four after the 14 overs when they lost Luus as well.

From there Mignon du Preez tried to play some aggressive shots and was batting on 19 off just 13 balls when Tryon also fell cheaply leaving South Africa at 87 for five in 17.5 overs. At the same time, rain fall became strong enough for the umpires to take the players off the field with DLS par score standing at 127 runs.

Brief Scores: West Indies 234/3 in 45.3 overs (Deandra Dottin 150*, Hayley Matthews 51; Shabnim Ismail 1/24) South Africa 87/5 in 17.4 overs (Tazmin Brits 33; Karishma Ramharack 2/18, Hayley Matthews 2/28) - No result