Kia Super League Preview: Yorkshire Diamonds v Western Storm

Western Storm will be looking to continue where they left off against Loughborough Lightning when the travel north to take on Yorkshire Diamonds in the Kia Super League at York CC tomorrow (Sunday).

After losing their opening match against Southern Vipers the Storm bounced back in impressive fashion with a five wicket win over the Lightning at the Cooper Associates County Ground and Captain Heather Knight is looking for more of the same from her team this weekend. “”It’s a short, sharp competition so if you lose your first two matches then you are going to struggle,” she said. “The Loughborough match saw a really good response from the girls and we put in a strong performance. Consistency can always be a bit of an issue in T20 cricket but the team will have got a lot of confidence from that win and hopefully we can do the same again this weekend. We’ve had a week to prepare and have used that time to work on things individually and as a team.”

Western Storm won the corresponding fixture by six wickets last year but Heather knows that this won’t be an easy encounter. “One thing Yorkshire have definitely got is a strong batting line up,” she said. “We will have to bowl really well because they’ve got some very dangerous players. Katherine Brunt has been going well with the bat and she loves batting in this format of the game and Chamari Athapaththu is a really good player too. I’ve seen a lot of her over the last few years and it’s great to see that players from countries like Sri Lanka are getting the chance to show what they can do in this competition. They’ve also got Sophie Devine who is probably the biggest hitter of the ball in the women’s game at the moment.”

The squad have been together for a while now and several of the players have made a big impression on the England Captain. “I’ve been really impressed by what I’ve seen from the girls so far,” Heather said. “I’ve already seen improvement in a lot of them and Claire Nicholas in particular has come in to the squad and we’ve given her a role in the powerplay, which isn’t an easy place to bowl as a spinner and she’s done brilliantly. It’s been great to see our county players really performing well alongside the internationals.

“We are two games in now and I don’t feel that we have performed to our potential as a team yet so hopefully we can do that on Sunday and get that win to set us up nicely for the rest of the competition.”

Ahead of the long trip up to Yorkshire, Western Storm have announced a deal with Devon based company Dartline, who will be supplying the transport for the squad’s travel this season.

With trips to Hampshire, York and Surrey in the competition’s group stages, the squad will be travelling on Dartline’s flagship coach, usually reserved for the Rugby Premiership Champions, Exeter Chiefs.

Dartline Director David Hounslow said: “As a South West company, we’re only too pleased to be able to support Western Storm this season, and  are  excited to be working with them. We wish them all the best for the Kia Super League competition and hopefully they can go one better than last year and bring another sporting trophy back to the region.”

Storm Head Coach Trevor Griffin said: “We’ve got a couple of really long road trips in the schedule this year, so it’s invaluable to have the support of Dartline so that the squad can arrive at games refreshed and ready to play. Of course we were even more delighted when they offered us the Exeter Chiefs’ coach. When the Chiefs last travelled on it, they came back as champions so fingers crossed that’s a good omen for us too!”

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09/07/2022 19:00 - The Cooper Associates County Ground