HOBART, Tasmania (CMC):West Indies captain Stafanie Taylor suffered a rare double failure with the bat, but her Sydney Thunder did enough to win twice in the inaugural Women’s Big Bash League here yesterday.In the first game of a doubleheader at the Kingston Twin Ovals, Thunder beat Brisbane Heat by five wickets in the first game and returned to defeat Hobart Hurricanes by eight runs in a night encounter.Both Thunder and Hurricanes sit top of the standings on 14 points with identical 7-2 records, but Thunder hold the edge courtesy of net run rate. Chasing an uncomplicated 95 for victory against Heat, Taylor was dismissed for a first-ball ‘duck’ as the visitors stumbled to 20 for three in the fifth over.However, Naomi Stalenburg stroked 42 and captain Alex Blackwell an unbeaten 32 in a 60-run fourth-wicket partnership which rescued the innings.Heat had earlier fallen for 94 all out off their 20 overs, with 19-year-old left-arm spinner Maisy Gibson taking three for 14.Taylor claimed one wicket for six runs from two overs of off-spin.In the second game at Bellerive Oval, Taylor managed just eight as Thunder reached 135 for seven off their 20 overs after opting to bat first.Stalenburg was again among the runs with a cavalier 37 off 16 deliveries, including five fours and two sixes.In reply, Hurricanes were restricted to 127 for eight off their 20 overs, with Taylor’s West Indies teammate Hayley Matthews scoring 11.Captain Heather Knight top-scored with 26.Taylor produced a crucial spell, picking up two for 27 from four overs, to help cripple the Hurricanes run chase.
0Shares0000Youcef Belaili (L) celebrates his goal against Senegal © AFP / Khaled DESOUKICAIRO, Egypt, Jun 27 – Riyad Mahrez and Algeria fired a warning to the rest of their Africa Cup of Nations title rivals with a deserved 1-0 win over Sadio Mane’s heavily-fancied Senegal in Cairo on Thursday.Mane struggled to impress on his return from suspension as Youcef Belaili crashed home the winner on 49 minutes to guarantee Algeria a berth in the last 16. It is almost a decade since Algeria last made an impact at the competition by reaching the 2010 semi-finals, and this was a performance of great promise from the north African side in front of a large crowd at a blustery 30 June Stadium.However Senegal, on the hunt for a first continental title, will still be expected to join Algeria in the knockout rounds as they wrap up the group phase against Kenya on July 1.Mane was one of three changes to the Senegal team that brushed Tanzania aside 2-0 in their opening game, with Cheikhou Kouyate filling in for the injured Salif sane in central defence. Algeria coach Djamel Belamdi stuck with the team that rolled Kenya over by the same scoreline.Resuming a Premier League rivalry that saw City pip Liverpool in a thrilling title race last season, Mane’s Senegal controlled possession initially albeit without testing Algeria goalkeeper Rais M’Bohli. Mane ballooned one free-kick well over while Keita Balde completely miscued another.Having absorbed Senegal’s advances with relative comfort, Algeria grew more assertive and Baghdad Bounedjah had Edouard Mendy scrambling across his goal when his a deflected effort that bounced narrowly wide.Bounedjah, who hit 39 goals in just 21 starts for Qatar’s Al Sadd last season, looked odds on to score for the second game running in Egypt when he lifted the ball over Mendy only for a retreating Kalidou Koulibaly to clear.The Algeria forward then nodded wide from a Mahrez free-kick and forced Mendy to force behind a scuffed attempt across goal.The half-time interval failed to arrest Algeria’s momentum as a sweeping attack saw Bounedjah lay off for Sofiane Feghouli to curl wide, but the breakthrough soon came for the Desert Foxes.Sadio Mane’s Senegal were second best to an Algeria side captained by Riyad Mahrez in Cairo © AFP / Khaled DESOUKIAfter Senegal conceded possession Feghouli pulled back from the byline down the right for Belaili to take a touch and slam the ball beyond a motionless, unsighted Mendy.Having created a raft of chances in a commanding win over Tanzania, Senegal’s attack found a compact Algeria far less forgiving and Mahrez went close to doubling the lead with a fizzing strike from distance.Algeria survived a late scare when Bounedjah almost inadvertently poked a set-piece into his own net, but this was a display that should fuel belief for nation whose only title came in 1990 on home soil.0Shares0000(Visited 2 times, 1 visits today)