Ireland international Amy Hunter hit a 69 from 50 balls as the Dragons comfortably chased the Typhoons’ tally in the Arachas Super T20 Trophy at Leinster Cricket Club.
The 16-year-old Belfast wicket-keeper looked in imperious form as she hit six limits and two sixes in her 65-minute shot. Hunter had missed recent internationals against South Africa due to exams but was named to the Ireland women’s squad earlier in the week to face Australia and Pakistan later in the month. His form will be encouraging for head coach Ed Joyce ahead of a tough series ahead.
The Typhoons opener got off to a spirited start under gray leaden skies, with Rebecca Stokell (22) clipping the first ball to the boundary, one of three fours struck from Arlene Kelly’s first shot. Stokell and partner Robyn Searle (13) looked solid against the setters, but when Dragons captain Leah Paul (3-23) decided to introduce the spin in the 5e more, via his own bowling game, the momentum of the game returned to the side in red. Paul trapped Searle in front with his third ball, then tried Mary Waldron to get out of her crease with a slower, fly ball that the batter missed and goaltender Amy Hunter was quick to pull the bails.
Paul then claimed a third wicket in his suite, driving through Stokell’s defenses and pushing back his central stump.
With the spin in the ascendancy, leg spinner Cara Murray was brought in and slid one against a Georgina Dempsey to hit the in-form batters back cushion. After an eerily silent call, Dempsey was knocked out by referee Paul Reynolds and the Typhoons collapsed 29-0 to 41-4 on 18 balls.
Needing a steadying round, Typhoons captain Laura Delany stepped forward and began to counterattack. She raised her half-century from just 37 balls, with seven limits. The Irish skipper showed no signs of her recent injury as she commanded the middle overs, joined by her Leinster CC team-mate Ava Canning (26*) in an 84-run fifth wicket.
Despite losing late wickets, including Delany for 53 (from 42 balls), Typhoons entered the innings break slightly more satisfied, having recovered from losing those four quick wickets to go 137-6 at the end of 20 overs.
In response, the Dragons’ opening pair, Paul and Hunter, were driving from the start. 28 runs came from the first three overs as the batters dominated a bowling attack that missed their mark early. Waldron was a surprise pick to overthrow the opener, but after 10 runs, Typhoons skipper Delany returned to her front line seamers of Canning and Dempsey. The team in red featured an opening fifty-point position inside the power play, but just as they were looking for complete control, Paul trailed a pulling shot directly halfway where a Celeste Running Raack took a well-judged hold.
Sarah Forbes then entered the fray and immediately found the border. Hunter hit his second six a few balls later, then bumped up his half-century from 31 balls. The second-wicket pairing was relentless, punishing anything full or wide.
Cruising at 131-1, the Dragons then lost four wickets for two runs on eight balls, before correcting course and overtaking the target of 138 with 10 balls to spare.
Hunter was named player of the game.
Typhoons v Dragons, Arachas Super 20 Trophy, Observatory Lane, 6 July 2022
Typhoons 137-6 (20 overs; L Delany 53; L Paul 3-23)
Dragons: 138-5 (18.2 overs; A Hunter 69, S Forbes 35; C Raack 3-22)