Trent Rockets 119 for 5 (Freeborn 45*) beat Manchester Originals 76 (King 4-15) by 43 runs
Fresh from a gold medal for Australia in the Commonwealth Games last weekend, King had a near-perfect day with bat, ball, and in the field, as spin dominated the low-scoring affair.
But it was King, who scored a quick 19 off nine, claimed 4 for 15 off 20 with the ball, and took a fantastic catch to round her performance off, who will rightly take the headlines.
King dismissed Cordelia Griffith, bowled for 12, before Sophie Ecclestone was trapped lbw first ball. With the crowd anticipating something special, Originals’ captain Cross was the victim of the hat-trick ball, as a jubilant King wheeled away in celebration after bowling the England international.
After being inserted, Rockets struggled with the bat in the absence of Australia overseas signing Meg Lanning, who is taking an indefinite break from cricket, as they slipped to 43 for 4 after 40 balls.
Elyse Villani, standing in as Rockets captain for Nat Sciver, who missed the match for personal reasons, attempted innovation in her three-ball innings, but was out reverse sweeping Hannah Jones for just 4. Marie Kelly, Mignon Du Preez, and Bryony Smith also fell for low scores, as Originals captain Kate Cross utilised the fast-changing nature of the format to introduce all six of her bowlers within the first 30 balls of the match to great effect.
Freeborn was the mainstay of the Rockets innings, using a mixture of power and deftness on her way to 45. She was assisted by King’s aggressive 19, including two big sixes over midwicket – the only maximums of the innings – to drag the Rockets to what looked an under-par 119 for 5.
The wickets were shared around for Originals with former West Indies player Deandra Dottin’s 2 for 21 from 20 standing out in restricting the Rockets total.
Recently retired former South Africa international Lizelle Lee got Originals off to the perfect start, hitting the first ball of the chase for six, and then followed that up with two more fours to take 14 from Katherine Brunt’s opening set of five.
However, after Lamb was bowled by Kathryn Bryce for nought, it was Rockets’ spinners that made the key contributions. First, the dangerous Dottin was caught off King without scoring before Sarah Glenn took a spectacular outstretched one-handed catch to dismiss the dangerous Lee for 17. Glenn then struck with her first ball, getting New Zealand’s Amy Satterthwaite stumped.
But it was King’s historic hat-trick that the sizeable Mancunian crowd will remember. Her near-perfect day wasn’t over either, as she took an excellent catch diving forward to dismiss Ami Campbell off fellow legspinner Glenn for 13.
From there the Originals innings petered out, finishing in disappointing fashion with a run-out to leave them with a heavy 43-run defeat.