Stand-in captain Amy Satterthwaite on Sunday called New Zealands one-wicket loss to England as “gut-wrenching”, admitting that their batting lacked a killer instinct and has let them down in the ongoing 2022 ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup.
Satterthwaite, one of the experienced players in the team, took over the reins from usual skipper Sophie Devine after she injured her back while batting and was unable to field before Satterthwaite’s wife Lea Tahuhu pulled up with a hamstring injury.
In their absence, Frankie Mackay stepped up and took career-best figures of four for 34 to pull England back into a tight contest when chasing a sub-par 204 after New Zealand had suffered their own batting collapse, losing eight for 69.
Nat Sciver’s 61 from 108 balls proved crucial as No. 11 Anya Shrubsole went on to hit the winning runs to earn another last-gasp victory for defending champions England that kept their own World Cup hopes alive. The loss has put hosts New Zealand on the brink of being knocked out of the tournament.
“It is never a nice position to be in when you’re relying on other results and I think coming into today, we felt like we still had it in our control. It’s pretty gut-wrenching to get that close and not quite get over the line and feel like you’re standing on the edge of the cliff, borderline out of the competition,” said Satterthwaite in the post-match press conference.
With Tahuhu and Devine off the field, Brooke Halliday was called on to bowl, taking her maiden international wicket to dismiss Amy Jones before Sophia Dunkley’s departure sparked a collapse of five wickets for 20 runs.
Despite moving just one wicket away from a famous win, the White Ferns could not get over the line and Satterthwaite cited the loss of two key players and their lower-order batting as key issues.
Notably, New Zealand had put up totals of over 250 each time they batted against India in their recent bilateral series before the World Cup but they could not step up once the big tournament arrived.
“The frustrating part is I really felt that we turned a corner against India in the series before this tournament as a group and we started to put some consistent totals on the board around that sort of 260/270 [mark] and everyone was playing their role superbly,” she said.
“We’ve obviously had some things not go our way today with the likes of Sophie’s injury, we’ve obviously lost Lauren Down coming into this tournament. But I still back the people that were in this line-up to produce bigger scores than what we have been and I think sometimes we possibly get a little bit ahead of ourselves and think we need more than we do,” she added.
The left-handed batter also talked about the lack of partnerships in the ongoing World Cup.
“If I compare from the India series to this campaign, it’s the partnerships. Against India we talked a lot about producing big partnerships: 100-run and match-winning partnerships, and if we look back across our World Cup games, I don’t know the numbers on top of my head, but there can’t be too many 80-90-100-plus partnerships.
“We probably got started and didn’t really have that kind of killer instinct, and like I said, take it to those big partnerships that would have put us in a really strong position to allow our middle to lower order to really launch,” she said.
“We’ll reflect on the tournament at some point and if we’re honest, batting is the thing that let us down the most and with the ball really tried to keep us in the tournament and we fought extremely hard and we can be really proud of that. But putting up scores of 200-220-odd against world-class opposition unfortunately is not enough and we needed to find a way to get bigger totals on the board,” she added.
Asked about the update on Leah and Sophie’s injury, Satterthwaite said that she hasn’t spoken to them very much after the game.
“I haven’t spoken to them very much after the game, I think both of them are average but we’ll see in the next couple of days and we’re fortunate we’ve got five days before our next game, so we can see how they are before that last one,” she said.