The Hundred: Maia Bouchier's magical knock for Brave

Maia Bouchier smashed an unbeaten 63 off 42 balls to help Southern Brave win a rain-curtailed encounter against London Spirit in The Hundred

Shivangi Sinha
New Update
Maia Bouchier

Maia Bouchier in action © Getty Images

Maia Bouchier's exemplary unbeaten half-century led Southern Brave to win the rain-curtailed clash against London Spirit at Lord’s on Tuesday (August 8). This was Spirit’s first match of The Hundred 2023 with the first two matches getting washed out.

"I really did enjoy it, it was great fun to go out there and contribute to the team performance. I think we bowled really well to set up the game," said Bouchier after the match.

At the start, the possibility of a match looked gloomy with covers being firmly placed over the pitch. But the rain stopped just in time for an 85-ball match to happen with a delayed start.

Keeping the conditions in mind, captain Anya Shrubsole asked Spirit to bat first. A classy inswinger from Lauren Bell saw the end of Grace Harris and this brought their skipper Heather Knight to the crease, her 44 off 27 balls guided the team's total to 104 for 5 at the end of the 85 balls.

For Brave, Georgia Adams bagged terrific figures of 4 for 11 from her spell.

Brave's chase started in the worst possible way with Danielle Gibson getting the marquee player Smriti Mandhana out for a three-ball duck. At this point, Maia Bouchier walked in at three.

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A fine aerial shot over extra cover from Bouchier's bat gave Brave their first boundary of the innings and five fours came in seven balls. This prompted another bowling change and Knight brought the young speedster Lauren Filer. On her third ball, Bouchier made room and pulled the short ball to perfection over mid-on.

Danielle Wyatt’s failed pull attempt gave the Spirit their second wicket but Bouchier did let that deter her. She attempted another pull off the very next ball and made sure that Brave didn’t let go off the momentum.

"Smriti (Mandhana) and Danni (Wyatt) have done an amazing job at the top for us and you know this gave us a chance to go and have a bat and show what we can do," Bouchier added.

Three wickets came within a span of eight balls and Brave slipped from 73 for 2 to 79 for 5. But an unbeaten 29-run partnership off just 18 deliveries between Bouchier and Maitlan Brown saw the visitors through without losing any more wickets.

"The key was just to stay in and bat the full 85, it was great to have Maitan at the end so she could just play to her strengths and you know I say one thing and she did the other thing (laughs) so it was quite funny to be batting with her," said Bouchier as she praised her partner.

Fittingly it was Bouchier who hit the winning runs as she reached to steer the ball through the point. She remained not out with her career-high 63 off 42. This was her first half-century in the tournament.

2023 has been a redemption year for the Southern Vipers star in the domestic circuit. She scored 196 runs from six matches at a blistering strike rate of 139 in the Charlotte Edwards Cup.

As of now, she sits handsomely in the second position on the list of highest run-getters in The Hundred 2023 with 134 from just four innings. In the previous two editions, Bouchier managed only 180 runs in her 14 innings with a high score of just 33.

"At the start definitely I wanted to get off to a good start and to just bring that all through to the end was the key for me" concluded Bouchier as she won the player of the match.