Rachel Heyhoe Flint Trophy: Alex Hartley takes six wickets in losing cause as Thunder lose third straight game

Southern Vipers and Northern Diamonds make it three victories from three in Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy – but Thunder and Sunrisers remain winless; Sunrisers’ defeat is their 16th in a row in 50-over matches; Sophie Luff hits unbeaten hundred to guide Western Storm to win

Last Updated: 16/07/22 6:36pm

Alex Hartley took six wickets for Thunder against South East Stars – but her side were then bowled out for just 146

Alex Hartley’s six-wicket haul came in vain as Thunder suffered a third consecutive defeat in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy after being bundled out for just 146 by South East Stars at Southport.

Left-arm spinner Hartley (6-24) removed five of Stars’ top six as the away side slumped from 67-0 to 122-9 – only for Lauren Smith (73no off 93 balls) to propel her side to 198 all out after sharing a last-wicket stand of 76 with Danielle Gregory (12).

Thunder would still have fancied chasing that total down and picking up their first points of the campaign, but they were rolled out in 40.1 overs with opener Georgie Boyce (68) the only player to pass 15.

Smith backed up her batting exploits with two wickets for the Stars, while debutant Bethan Miles bagged 3-15 in six overs as the visitors made it two wins out of three so far this term.

Thunder are one of two teams yet to get off the mark this season, with Sunrisers also stuck on zero points after a 16th consecutive defeat in 50-over cricket following a three-wicket loss to Western Storm.

Sunrisers posted 254-6 but Storm trumped that with an over to spare after recovering from 39-3 and 103-5, thanks to Sophie Luff’s unbeaten 100 and a rollicking 74 from just 43 balls from Katie George at Chelmsford.

George bossed a 125-run stand with Luff for Storm’s sixth wicket, nailing 13 fours and a six, and when she was dismissed, Luff took the visitors over the line, with the match-winning four also taking her into three figures.

Sunrisers’ total was underpinned by a 148-run opening partnership between Cordelia Griffith (74) and Grace Scrivens (69).

Defending champions Southern Vipers and Northern Diamonds occupy the top two spots after recording their third wins on the trot.

Diamonds ensured Eve Jones’ 91 from 128 balls for Central Sparks came in a losing cause as they reached their target of 215 with 64 balls in reserve to win by five wickets – the major contributions coming from Lauren Winfield-Hill (50), Hollie Armitage (60no) and Sterre Kalis (46).

Jones’ knock and an unbeaten 48 from Abi Freeborn earlier underpinned Sparks’ 214-6 but they were restricted by a disciplined Diamonds attack, led by Emma Marlow, who took 2-37 and also recorded a run-out.

Vipers also maintained their 100 per cent record with a 66-run win over Lightning despite missing a number of players, including Danni Wyatt, due to England commitments.

Vipers posted 294-6, with Georgia Adams (82) and Ella McCaughan (72) sharing an opening stand of 153 before three wickets fell for two runs.

Emily Windsor (47no off 49), Tara Norris (21) and Nancy Harman (23no off 12) then helped Vipers pump up their score in the later overs.

Norris and Charlotte Taylor went on to claim three wickets each and Harman struck twice as Lightning were all out for 228 in reply – Josie Groves top-scoring with 55.

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