A home hat-trick

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JERSEY capped off a perfect weekend of cricket with a 100-run thumping of Guernsey yesterday, to strengthen their stance on the ICC women’s T20 world rankings and reclaim the inter-island bragging rights.

Charlie Miles hit an unbeaten 78 at Grainville yesterday to help the Caesareans seal a series whitewash, having already claimed the Brooks Macdonald Inter-Insular Cup with two wins from two on Saturday.

Jersey, who won by nine wickets and 62 runs in games one and two, reached 155/3 off their 20 overs, before humbling their visitors ­– the defending champions, from 2019 – with a tight bowling display.

‘The girls put in three pretty clinical performances across the weekend,’ said Jersey Women head coach Lee Meloy. ‘When we started the focus was to look at ourselves and put in the performances we needed to get the victories, and there were multiple individuals standing up across the weekend. Winning as a squad is always nicer, with everyone contributing as they go.

A lot of time and effort has gone into this and that showed. They have backed up the effort they put in behind the scenes. We’re keen as coaches to get them in and improve their skills but the players have to put the effort in. And they do. They have a lot of sessions at 6.30am on a Friday morning in the gym and we’re seeing that work starting to pay off.’

Discussing the transition since that inter-insular defeat in 2019, Meloy added: ‘We have lost a lot of games to better opposition to us since then but that has put us in good stead. Going through those tough times makes us stronger as a team.’

It was a steady start for Meloy’s side yesterday, with defensive play taking priority, and Maria Da Rocha fell to an early lbw, with just seven runs on the board.

Captain Chloe Greechan joined Miles in the middle and did what good captains do; leading by example with a boundary on the first ball she faced, over long leg.

Had Guernsey’s fielding been more effective Jersey could have been in trouble on a number of occasions – and seen their total significantly reduced. A sackful of shots were either missed or returned slowly as the Sarnians opted to block with their feet, rather than getting down low to collect with their hands.

As a result, Greechan and Miles were able to settle themselves and punish Guernsey with a collection of 4s and casual singles. The wide-count boosted their efforts, too – as it did in game two on Saturday, when ‘Ms Extras’ top-scored with 34.

The Caesarean duo took Jersey’s tally beyond 50 runs in the ninth over and Miles hit that mark herself in the 13th– two balls after a scare, when she skied a ball towards backward point. A more dynamic fielder in that position would likely have taken the catch.

Greechan was dismissed in the 16th over for 34, caught and bowled by Molly Robinson, but Analise Merritt (20) and Trinity Smith (6) came in to offer suitable support to Miles as she trundled along to register half of Jersey’s 155-run total.

Guernsey scored four runs off the opening two overs of their reply as Greechan proved a menace with ball in hand. The lawn bowls champion’s pinpoint deliveries gave openers Philippa Stahelin and Fran Bulpitt little chance to attack and the latter was soon sent packing. Her disappointed, drawn-out cry of ‘no’, in frustration at herself, pre-empted an easy catch by Greechan.

Flo Copley, who took 2-10 in game two on Saturday, then claimed two wickets in four balls – Stahelin and Hannah Eulenkamp – to reduce Guernsey to 5/3, before Emily Merrien was the victim of a bizarre stumping. She casually wandered out of her crease following an air shot, leaving her side on 9/4.

Bex Hubbard hit Guernsey’s first boundary in the seventh, but only thanks to a miss-field at long on, and while the middle order were stubborn they failed to contribute anything meaningful to the scoreboard. The Sarnians sat on 31/5 at the halfway stage of the innings and dot balls became a frequent occurrence after that. Hubbard went in the 14th over for 16 off 32 balls, leaving their tally at 39/7, and only 14 more runs were added before the close of play.

Guernsey coach Ben Ferbrache said: ‘We played against a very good Jersey side there, who were coming off success in an ICC tournament [in Paris last month, versus France, Austria and Spain]. Were on the same journey they’ve been on for three years, but ours is just starting now.’

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