Birmingham Phoenix now have to wait to earn a position in the Hundred’s knockout rounds after they suffered a batting collapse and lost to Manchester Originals. Phoenix is still in prime position to be in the top 3, but the defeat has allowed a few additional teams, especially Originals, to make a late push.
Originals had a fantastic start with the ball while defending 122. Just two balls were needed for Kate Cross to score, and she was ably supported by players like Hannah Jones, Phoebe Graham, and Sophie Ecclestone. To completely surprise the batting team, the bowling unit quickly secured the important wickets of Sophie Devine, Amy Jones, Ellyse Perry, and Sophie Molineux. Phoenix was reduced to 22/5 due to the collapse, and even though the aim was just 123, there was virtually no chance to recover.
Since Georgia Elwiss and Issy Wong stopped the decline with a key 46-run stand, none of the top 5 players were able to reach double digits. But as soon as that alliance fell apart, it was game over. Phoenix was bowled out for 104, which resulted in a loss by 18 runs, while Ecclestone added two more wickets to her total to finish with astonishing statistics of 3/8.
The start that Originals made earlier in the day was quite different. At the top of the order, Lizelle Lee and Emma Lamb got rolling and contributed 53 runs for the first wicket. After slamming nine boundaries between them, they did fall quickly one after the other, but Originals bounced back after a key 25-ball 28 from Erin Burns. Ecclestone added the finishing touches that helped her team reach 122 at the very end, which was enough to keep Originals’ playoff hopes alive.