Katie Levick starred with five wickets in leading an on-point bowling display as the Northern Diamonds beat the Blaze in a 40-over friendly at Worksop College today. 

Leg-spinner Levick was the day’s outstanding performer with 5-20 from seven overs, the Blaze losing 11 wickets for just 99 runs.

In real terms, they were bowled out for 87 inside 33 overs, though batted on to 35 overs for extra practice. Captain and opener Marie Kelly batted twice.

Seamer Grace Hall took the new ball and set the tone expertly. She returned figures of 3-6 from five overs, including the wicket of Kelly to set the ball rolling.

In reply, the Diamonds finished on 157-8 from 40 overs, though reached the target of 100 having lost only two wickets. Emma Marlow top-scored from number three with 35.

Grace Hall

Picture by Allan McKenzie/ Grace Hall set the Blaze top order alight with three wickets 

Both sides were missing key players in the lead-up to the start of the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy next Saturday. Diamonds captain Hollie Armitage was one who didn’t play, for example. 

The Blaze were hamstrung having been inserted, slipping to 7-4 in eight overs. 

Beth Harmer gave the innings respectability with a middle order 51 not out, battling hard against a six-strong bowling attack who showed plenty of encouraging signs.

Abi Glen, Phoebe Turner and Jess Woolston all claimed a wicket apiece.

In reply, the Diamonds lost Sterre Kalis early, only for captain for the day Lauren Winfield-Hill and Marlow to share 60 for the second wicket. 

Emma Marlow

Picture by Allan McKenzie/ Emma Marlow top-scored with the bat in today’s friendly.

Winfield-Hill was trapped lbw for 30 by Rhiannon Knowling-Davies before Rebecca Duckworth added 18.

Duckworth fell with the score on 100 in the 28th over before the Diamonds batted on.

Leah Dobson added 28, while Knowling-Davies finished with three wickets for the Blaze.

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