MATCH CENTRE 

The Northern Diamonds and the Southern Vipers had to settle for two points apiece as rain hit Arundel to ruin their Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy fixture.

The rain which swept across the country today only hit the picturesque Sussex venue just after midday, allowing the Diamonds to reach 105-4 in the 26th over having been inserted.

Unfortunately, when it did arrive, it didn’t stop and left the Diamonds with their first No Result of the summer across 17 games, including both this competition and the Charlotte Edwards T20 Cup.

The Diamonds remain in fourth place in the RHFT table on 21 points after 10 games.

Should the South East Stars, who hold the all-important final knockout qualifying berth in third, also be rained off against Western Storm at Beckenham today, the gap would remain at five points. 

There are four games remaining (20 points to play for), the first of which comes in early September.

This was the final fixture before the six-and-a-half-week break before the Hundred, which starts the week after next.

The Diamonds played out a mixed first half of their innings against old foes the Vipers – the two teams who have contested each of the first three RHF Trophy finals.

They slipped to 24-2 inside nine overs, losing Sterre Kalis caught at slip off Australian seamer Maitlan Brown and Lauren Winfield-Hill bowled by an in-ducker from another seamer Mary Taylor, who struck with her first ball.

Captain Hollie Armitage and Emma Marlow then shared a steadying 58 for the third wicket.

Armitage hit seven fours in an innings top-score of 48 off 64 balls. She cut well against Brown’s pace and pulled well against Alice Monaghan’s seam.

Marlow also drove the off-spin of Georgia Adams down the ground for her only boundary in 25 not out.

But the Diamonds were put on the back foot once more when Adams had a cutting Armitage caught behind and debutant batter Rebecca Duckworth bowled first ball playing back as the score fell to 82-4 after 20 overs.

Duckworth was in as one of two team changes from last week’s defeat to Central Sparks at Headingley, with Scotland seamer Rachel Slater also in. Bess Heath and Grace Hall didn’t play. 

Marlow and South African Chloe Tryon were in the early stages of a recovery job when the rain arrived.

Umpires Ben Peverall and Anthony Harris called the fixture off just before 3.20pm. 

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