West Indies Women 143 for 6 (Taylor 63, Ismail 3-25) beat South Africa Women 98 (Kapp 17, Mohammed 2-12) by 45 runs
Stafanie Taylor’s half-century and contribution with the ball ensured West Indies leveled the series against South Africa with a dominant showing at the Wanderers. Taylor led a recovery after South Africa made early breakthroughs and then pushed them to a decent total on a good pitch, before her bowlers kept South Africa under constant pressure in a chase that never really got underway. They lost 6 for 24, with Taylor picking up two at the end, and were bowled out inside 20 overs, leaving themselves work to do ahead of the series decider in Cape Town on Wednesday.
South Africa would have felt they made the right decision after they put West Indies in to bat and had them at 17 for 2 in the first three overs. Shabnim Ismail’s impressive run continued as she claimed both wickets.
That brought West Indies’ most dangerous pair together. Deandra Dottin and Taylor took on the South African bowling and were particularly severe on the short ball. Taylor showed both power and placement with the pull and the sweep while Dottin was inventive and even scooped Marcia Letsoalo over fine leg. Letsoalo, though, had the last laugh when she trapped Dottin lbw at the end of the 13th over to end the 68-run stand.
Following Dottin’s wicket, South Africa pulled West Indies back with two boundary-less overs and in frustration Taylor holed out to long-on with the score at 100. West Indies would have been eyeing a total over 150 and Stacy-Ann King played her part in trying to get them there. She was aggressive at the end and took 18 runs off the penultimate over before being caught at cover. That was the first of two wickets South Africa took in the last over to keep West Indies under 150 but it still proved too much to chase.
After an untidy start by Shamilia Connell, Tremayne Smartt had Dane van Niekerk caught at slip to leave South Africa’s debutant opener Lara Goodall with immense responsibility early on. She was joined by her captain Mignon du Preez, who took the initiative early with two pulls off Smartt but found the rest of the attack – Connell in particular – difficult to get away.
Goodall hit Connell straight to cover but Marizanne Kapp found a way to attack the fast bowler, who bowled her full quota of four overs upfront. She struggled in her final over and Kapp took advantage, first of width and then of a line that was straight. Connell should have had Kapp caught at short fine leg but had bowled a front-foot no-ball; Kapp survived and sent the free hit for four.
South Africa’s good fortune ended there. Kapp gifted midwicket a catch in the next over from Hayley Matthews and du Preez was lbw four balls later. The hosts were wobbling at 52 for 4.
Taylor brought herself on and between her and Matthews, they gave away just eight runs in the next three overs to push the required run rate over ten. Dinesha Devnarain tried to ease the pressure with 12 runs in an over but the attack was short-lived.
Devnarain was run out after Anisa Mohammed bowled Lizelle Lee, the wicket that sparked South Africa’s collapse.