England duly finished 3rd in the Women's World Cup, beating New Zealand by 4 wickets into 4th. In the other game played today Sri Lanka beat South Africa by 88 runs to claim 5th and leave South Africa in a very creditable 6th place in the tournament.
In a game without too much spark, and with England yet again without the services of Anya Shrubsole, The White Ferns were invited to bat first. When Suzie Bates made her lowest score of the tournament, 21, the New Zealanders became tentative, only Amy Satterthwaite (85) driving and pulling her way to another decent score as England fed her two favourite shots. Kiwi progress was too slow given the lack of movement in the wicket and of any penetrative bowling from an attack that had the look of players ready to head home. Holly Colvin again stood out with 3/31. Only a rapid 27no from 12 balls from Nichola Browne at the end of the Kiwi innings gave them over 200 to bowl at, but 220/8 always looked 40/50 runs short.
Danni Wyatt went early in the England reply, but centurian Charlotte Edwards (106) stood firm with cameos from Taylor(28), Greenway(31), and Brindle (27) and England were cruising to victory at 199/3, but three quick wickets and the denial of a blatant caught behind for Edwards on 99, and suddenly the nerves were back. Edwards declined to walk, perhaps remembering the shocking lbw decision she had received against Australia, and together with Laura Marsh got England over the line for the $15,000 third prize.
All eyes are now on the final on Sunday between the Aussies and the West Indies. I cannot see the Southern Stars allowing the Windies to settle, but at least I will be able to watch it as an impartial observer - watching England does nothing for your nerves.