England women holds nerve to win third World Cup title

March 22nd, 2009 - 10:13 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, March 22 (IANS) England women’s cricket team romped to their third World Cup title, beating New Zealand by four wickets in a thrilling final at North Sydney Oval here Sunday.
England fast bowler Nickyi Shaw produced her career-best figure of four for 34 as New Zealand were bowled out for 166 in 47.2 overs after electing to bat first.

In response, England made hard work of the run-chase, slipping from 74-0 to 149-6 but held their nerve to achieve the victory target with 23 balls to spare.

It is England’s third World Cup triumph but their first outside England following its victories in 1973 and 1993.

Shaw, the 27-year-old from Warwickshire, also pitched in with the bat, hitting 17 not out from 23 balls with two fours that earned her the player-of-the-final award.

Shaw’s team-mate Claire Taylor, who scored 21, was declared player of the tournament for her 324 runs in the tournament.

England, in their target chase, were provided with a solid start by openers Sarah Taylor (39) and Caroline Atkins (40) who put on 74 runs for the first wicket before New Zealand staged a late fight-back through Lucy Doolan (3-23) and vice-captain Aimee Mason (2-28).

However, their efforts were not enough as England’s lower order, led by Shaw, showed grit and spirit to surpass the target in front of more than 2,300 cheering spectators.

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