The Hundred: Sophia Dunkley and Anya Shrubsole help steer Southern Brave as they continue unbeaten run against Welsh Fire

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Sophia Dunkley scored 49 runs off 43 balls as Southern Brave secured another win against Welsh Fire; Lauren Bell, Georgia Adams and captain Anya Shrubsole all contributed with the ball as the visitors bowled Fire out for 108

Last Updated: 22/08/22 8:01pm

Sophia Dunkley struck a stellar 49 off 43 balls as Southern Brave put in another big performance. (Getty Images)

Southern Brave put in another perfectly balanced performance to beat Welsh Fire, with the batting prowess of Sophia Dunkley combined with the bowling of Lauren Bell, Anya Shrubsole and Georgia Adams extending their unbeaten run to four matches in a row. 

Welsh Fire 108 all out (99 balls):Beaumont (9), Matthews (20), Sutherland (22), George (15), Bryce (28); Bell (2-17), Shrubsole (3-20)

Southern Brave 122-8 off 100 balls:Wyatt (16), Mandhana (13), Dunkley (49), Adams (25); Baker (1-21) Matthews (2-26)

Sophia Dunkley made an impressive 49 before skipper Shrubsole took 3-20 as the visitors ripped through a dismal Fire batting line-up to record a fourth straight win.

The hosts were bowled out for 108 and never looked like chasing down the target of 122 after openers Tammy Beaumont and Hayley Matthews were removed.

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Amanda-Jade Wellington, the leading wicket-taker in the competition, moved her tally to eight after picking up 1-21 while Lauren Bell and Georgia Adams, who scored a quick-fire unbeaten 25 with the bat, also bowled superbly to take
two wickets apiece.

Brave had got off to a quick start with the bat before Fire removed Smriti Mandhana for 13 and Danni Wyatt for 16 to prevent the Southampton-based side recording a fourth 50-run opening partnership in as many matches.

Fire’s Alex Hartley was excellent in the middle period and finished with 1-12 from her 20 balls to prevent Brave’s acceleration as key wickets fell at fairly consistent intervals.

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Fire could have been looking at a much smaller chase, but they produced some poor fielding that included a couple of simple dropped catches – one of which was knocked over the boundary rope for six by Annabel Sutherland.

Dunkley was put down on 12 before going on to top-score with a composed 49 from 43 balls and Adams, who was also dropped late on, played well for her unbeaten 25 off 16 at the back end of the innings to squeeze Brave to 122-8.

With Georgia Haynes out ill, Fire were even more reliant on Matthews and skipper Beaumont.

But Beaumont was caught off the bowling of Bell for nine and Matthews struggled to get going before being caught at slip for a run-a-ball 20 off the in-form Wellington.

Brave used the drying pitch effectively to continue to pick up consistent wickets throughout.

Southern Brave’s bowling outfit left no room for error for Welsh Fire as they reduced them to their final batter. (Getty Images)

When captain Shrubsole had Sutherland caught behind for 22 to leave Fire 67-5 and requiring another 56 runs, the result felt inevitable.

Sarah Bryce made a late attack, but she was run out off the penultimate ball for 28 to leave Fire 108 all out.

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Hero of the game, Sophia Dunkley (49 off 43 balls)

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Sophia Dunkley was named the match hero after her 49 runs from 42 balls helped Southern Brave beat Welsh Fire by 14 runs.

Sophia Dunkley was named the match hero after her 49 runs from 42 balls helped Southern Brave beat Welsh Fire by 14 runs.

Dunkley said: “I just tried to bat through the innings and be positive and try and anchor it a little bit.

“We thought 125 was a good score so we just tried to do that.

“It was just a bit hard, but getting a score on that [meant] we had the bowling to defend it.

“I think our bowlers were outstanding today.

“Really happy with that and the bowlers should be really proud of what they did.”

What’s next?

On Tuesday, Oval Invincibles are back in action at the Kia Oval as they welcome Birmingham Phoenix, with the women’s fixture getting under way at 3pm before the men’s match at 6.30pm.

Welsh Fire are next in action on Wednesday as they travel to Lord’s to face London Spirit (women’s match at 3pm followed by the men at 6.30pm).

For Southern Brave, a home fixture awaits on Thursday as they face Trent Rockets. The women’s match will get under way at 3.30pm followed by the men’s match at 7pm.

Watch every match from The Hundred this summer live on Sky Sports.

Tickets for The Hundred are selling fast! If you want to be part of the action, go to thehundred.com/tickets

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