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White Ferns blow chance to win first ODI

England women's cricket
England claimed a four-wicket victory over the White Ferns in the first ODI. PHOTO: DAVE LINTOTT PHOTOGRAPHY

The White Ferns have let England off the hook to drop the opening one-day international at Wellington's Basin Reserve.


England recovered from the brink of collapse to earn a four-wicket win in the opening ODI on Monday, with Amy Jones and Charlie Dean coming to the rescue.


Chasing just 208 for victory, the tourists were teetering at 79-6 in the 17th over, before a resurrection to cruise home with 8.4 overs remaining and take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.


Jones (92 not out from 83 balls) was the stand-out for England, combining with Dean (42 not out from 70) for an unbroken 130-run partnership for the seventh wicket to rescue her team's stumbling chase.


Captain Melie Kerr - filling in for the injured Sophie Devine – was the pick of the NZ bowlers, finishing with 2-46, but with the visitors on the ropes, White Ferns bowlers were too loose with line and length.



Earlier, England stemmed a fast start by the New Zealanders to restrict them to 207 in 48.2 overs. It was a familiar story for the White Ferns, who once again made a strong start until dramatically falling off the pace once the top-order departed.


Opener Suzie Bates made her way to 50, before being caught behind, with the Ferns still well-placed at 90-1 after 21 overs.


Bernadine Bezuidenhout and Kerr (24) steered them to 148-3 in the 35th over, but Kerr's departure sparked the regular fall of wickets and a below-par total.


The second match of the series takes place at Hamilton's Seddon Park on Thursday.

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