As we have witnessed some excited finishes and one-sided affairs in the ongoing eight-team ICC Women’s World Cup 2017, we have now entered into the enterprising end of the tournament which would witnesses only winner – to lift the coveted trophy, as four teams are scheduled to wrestle this week, in a bid to lay hands on the title which has the price tag of whopping USD 660,000. (Read Here: ICC Women’s World Cup 2017: We Expect India To Be Really Tough, Says Ellyse Perry Ahead Of Semifinal).
The hosts England, led by Heather Knight, have maintained top position, in the group stage after winning six matches out of seven, as they have claimed 12 points alongside Australia, a side which is placed at the second position by the difference of Net Run-rate.
Whereas, on the flip side, South African has claimed five wins – to bag 10 points which saw them being placed at number four spot after all-round performance kept them in the hunt.
Both teams have met at the Bristol earlier, in the ongoing tournament in which batters have plundered runs, as the teams amassed 678 in total after surpassing the 300-run mark, which further saw the centuries by Tammy Beamount (148 off 145 balls) Sarah Taylor (147 off 104), as England went on to post 373, in 50 overs after losing five wickets.
Interestingly, it was the highest grand total on the basis of cumulative score in women’s ODI history after England claimed the victory by 68 runs, before seeing South Africa posting 305, for nine in 50 overs.
As England would be aiming to trounce Dane van Niekerk-led South Africa, in a bid to eye major championship title, in the span of around eight years whereas, Africa would be playing first semi-final after 17 years since 2000.
On the other hand, South Africa has emerged as a side which has shown quality improvement in all three departments.
The Top Performers:
England opener batter Tammy Beaumont is the leading run-scorer of the tournament with 372 runs in seven matches.
Skipper Heather Knight, who is placed at the fifth spot, has amassed 333 runs in seven matches to provide an early impetus for her side which further saw Sarah Taylor strengthen the batting department by adding 297 runs in seven games, as the right-handed wicket-keeper batter is placed ninth on the most-run charts of the ongoing competition.
The 25-year-old right-handed batter Lizelle Lee of South Africa is placed at 11th spot with 262 runs in six matches, as her teammate Laura Wolvaardt has earned the 12th spot, after scoring 258 runs in six games.
Adding to the fact, England has four batters in the list of top-ten of the most-run getters, as three South Africans have maintained their positions respectively, in the list of most wickets.
It further reveals the competition would be more sort of a batting versus bowling, as England players have the high chances – to dictate their terms owing to the home conditions.
For England, Natalie Sciver would be a player to watch out for after smashing two centuries. The 24-year-old Tokyo-born right-handed batter has registered 315 runs in seven matches, as the explosive batter is placed seventh in most-run getter of the season.
Rolling over the arm:
Skipper South Africa Dane van Niekerk has set an example by leading from the front with the ball which further has seen the all-rounder helping its team to qualify for the semis, as a contribution from other players have also been one of the highlights for the Proteas women.
The 24-year-old Pretoria-born leg-spinner kept things under control which further saw her bagging 15 wickets in six matches after conceding 125 runs, as the right-arm fast bowler Marizanne Kapp, claimed 12 wickets after giving away 209 runs, which saw both maintaining the first two positions.
In the mix, the 28-year-old Cape Town-born fast bowler Shabnim Ismail is placed at the tenth position after claiming nine wickets in six games at the expense of 215 runs.
However, there is the only bowler of England, in the top-20 list of the most wicket takers in the ongoing World Cup, in the form of Lancashire-born left-arm orthodox spinner Alex Hartley, who has bagged eight wickets in six matches, after giving away 204 runs.
Bristol ground is expected to be full of runs, and England would be aiming to play on a fresh surface – to make it count and South Africa would be hinging on its pacers, who had enjoyed enough success than their batters in nutshell.
Talking about the spinners, they have a role to play, as England’s last game against West Indies on the same ground saw a lot of turn on an offer.