NZ into final after stumble

New Zealand batsman Sophie Devine bats against England during their tri-series twenty20...
New Zealand batsman Sophie Devine bats against England during their tri-series twenty20 international in Bristol yesterday. Watching is England wicketkeeper Sarah Taylor. England won by seven wickets. Photo: Getty Images
The good news is the White Ferns are safely through to the final of the twenty20 tri-series in England following a comprehensive eight-wicket win against South Africa yesterday.

The bad news is the New Zealanders were well beaten in the dress rehearsal as England recorded an equally impressive seven-wicket win in the second game of the double-header.

White Ferns captain Suzie Bates brought up her 100th T20 international match in the defeat to England and gave an honest assessment of her side’s effort.

"Look, we just weren’t good enough today," Bates said.

"We got off to a slow start but Amy Satterthwaite and Sophie Devine’s partnership got us back in the game.

"But we just didn’t have enough batters that played smart enough cricket with Sophie there at the end."

The White Ferns were bowled out for 129.  Devine top-scored with 52 and Satterthwaite added 37.

England breezed passed the target with more than four overs to spare. Sarah Taylor led the chase with 51 from 37 deliveries and Natalie Sciver (39 not out) and Heather Knight (24 not out) finished the job.

"We were 20 runs short and that made it really difficult with the ball," Bates said.

"It was disappointing not to bat our full 20 and we are going to have to talk about the way we go about that back end [of an innings]."

The earlier game was a completely different story.

The White Ferns restricted South Africa to 148 for six and Bates (62) and Devine (68 not out) put on 130 for the first wicket to steer their side to victory.

The final is early Monday morning.

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