Skip to content

Sophia Dunkley answers England axing with century in RHF Trophy for South East Stars

Sophia Dunkley was left out of both England's white-ball squad announced last week after scoring only one international half-century since the start of 2023; watch England's T20I and ODI series against Pakistan, live on Sky Sports from Saturday, May 11

Sophia Dunkley, South East Stars, RHF Trophy
Image: Sophia Dunkley returned to form with a superb 130 in a losing cause for South East Stars in the RHF Trophy

Sophia Dunkley responded to being dropped by England in the best possible way with a stunning hundred for South East Stars in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy, albeit her 130 against Northern Diamonds came in an agonising three-run defeat.

Dunkley was left out of both England's ODI and T20 squads selected to face Pakistan later this month, with the hope of her rediscovering her best form in domestic cricket... and she did exactly that, scoring 130 off 136 balls.

Since the start of 2023, Dunkley has hit just one half-century in her last 22 England caps across all formats, despite regularly opening the batting, but she was back to her best here, hitting eight boundaries and one six over the course of her sparkling century.

England white-ball squads to face Pakistan

England IT20 squad: Heather Knight (c), Lauren Bell, Maia Bouchier, Alice Capsey, Charlie Dean, Sophie Ecclestone, Lauren Filer, Danielle Gibson , Sarah Glenn, Bess Heath, Amy Jones, Freya Kemp, Nat Sciver-Brunt, Linsey Smith, Danielle Wyatt

England ODI squad: Heather Knight (c), Tammy Beaumont, Lauren Bell, Maia Bouchier, Alice Capsey, Kate Cross, Charlie Dean, Sophie Ecclestone, Lauren Filer, Sarah Glenn, Amy Jones, Nat Sciver-Brunt, Danielle Wyatt

But with three balls to go and the Stars needing eight more for victory, Dunkley was run out when inexplicably failing to ground her bat as she scampered back for a second run.

Bethan Miles was then ultimately unable to hit a boundary off the last delivery, meaning the Stars fell agonisingly short of what would have been a women's List A world-record run chase of 312.

Dunkley said after the match: "It was pretty tough to finish like that, but it was a good effort from everyone to get up to that score.

"It was only a couple of boundaries away, so it wasn't that far. We gave ourselves our best chance going into it [the final over].

Also See:

"To get that close, within three runs, what can you do? Some days it happens, some days it doesn't."

Jones ton in winning cause | Sunrisers beat Vipers to go top

Elsewhere, another incredible hundred scored by Central Sparks skipper Eve Jones proved to be a match-winning one as she carried her bat in a remarkable last-gasp victory against Thunder at Old Trafford.

Jones' unbeaten 136 - the highest score by a woman at the ground - steered her side to a thrilling three-wicket win that had still looked beyond Sparks as late as the last over which saw them needing 11 more runs.

Earlier, Emma Lamb and fellow opener Seren Smale shared an opening partnership of 140 - Thunder's first ever century stand for the first wicket in the competition - as Lamb scored 107 and the hosts compiled a seemingly formidable score of 284-7.

But Sparks captain Jones was the hero of the hour, aided by a crucial knock of 40 from Australian batter Courtney Webb, as she hit the winning runs in the final over to seal their thrilling victory.

Sunrisers' Flo Miller cracked an unbeaten 47 from 59 balls to secure her side victory, and top spot in the table, after a back-and-forth contest against Southern Vipers at Radlett.

The defending champion Vipers had looked clear favourites after reducing the home side to 138-6 in pursuit of their 212-run target, with off-spinner Charli Knott taking 3-35.

But 20-year-old Miller shared in a match-winning seventh-wicket stand of 60 from 71 with Jo Gardner (19) and kept her cool to score the winning run, securing Sunrisers' fourth win of the tournament with three balls to spare.

At Trent Bridge, South Africa all-rounder Nadine de Klerk struck a magnificent unbeaten 106 as The Blaze fought back to beat the visiting Western Storm by four wickets.

Chasing 276 for victory, the home side looked to be heading for a fifth defeat in six matches when they slipped to 137-6 following Natasha Wraith's impressive career-best 73 in the Storm innings.

But 24-year-old De Klerk turned things round in a superb, unbroken 139-run partnership with 21-year-old wicketkeeper Ella Claridge (64no), who notched her first half-century in women's regional cricket, as The Blaze won with 12 balls to spare.

Book Fury vs Usyk on Sky Sports Box Office

Fury vs Usyk

It's one of the biggest sporting events in a generation. Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk collide for the undisputed world heavyweight title on Saturday May 18, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Book now.

Ad content | Stream Sky Sports on NOW

Sky Sports on NOW

Stream Sky Sports live with no contract on a Month or Day membership on NOW. Instant access to live action from the Premier League and EFL, plus darts, cricket, tennis, golf and so much more.

Get Sky Sports on WhatsApp

You can now receive messages and alerts for the latest breaking sports news, analysis, in-depth features and videos from our dedicated WhatsApp channel. Find out more here...

Around Sky