England women beat New Zealand in Twenty20 series opener
Women's quadrangular Twenty20 series
- Dates: 23-27 June
- Venues: Billericay, Chelmsford, Bristol, Clifton College, Taunton Vale, Taunton, Rose Bowl
Coverage: Scorecards and reports on BBC Sport website & mobiles; matches live on Sky Sports (subscription required)
England 86-2 (13.1 overs) beat New Zealand 83 (19.3 overs) by eight wickets at Chelmsford (match scorecard)
Australia 63-2 (10.2 overs) beat India 62 (18.2 overs) by eight wickets at Billericay (match scorecard)
England's women easily beat New Zealand at Chelmsford to get their quadrangular Twenty20 series off to a flying start.
Arran Brindle and Holly Colvin each bagged three wickets as the Kiwis struggled to a disappointing 83 all out as Suzie Bates top-scored with 19.
Skipper Charlotte Edwards hit 40 not out, passing 1,000 T20 international runs, to guide England to an eight-wicket win with 6.5 overs to spare.
In Thursday's other game at Billericay, Australia beat India by eight wickets.
And the two old rivals now meet in Bristol on Saturday, as a warm-up for the men's Twenty20 international between England and Sri Lanka.
Both teams impressed in their opening matches as the round-robin phase began in damp conditions in Essex on Thursday.
Australia only needed 10.3 overs to comfortably surpass the meagre Indian total of 62, of which Harmanpreet Kaur contributed 42.
Leah Poulton produced an unbeaten 31 for the Southern Stars as they eased to victory in the tournament's opening game.
TOP TWENTY20 RUN-SCORERS
- England captain Charlotte Edwards (1,106) has become the first woman to pass 1,000 Twenty20 international runs
- New Zealand's Brendon McCullum (1,100) is the only man to pass the 1,000 barrier in Twenty20 internationals
In Chelmsford, England's women were in similar dominant mood and rattled out a lacklustre New Zealand side, who had only been in the UK for five days, for a total of 83.
It was all downhill after the White Ferns lost captain Aimee Watkins for a duck in the fifth ball of the innings as she was bowled by a brute of a delivery from Katherine Brunt, despite some resistance from Bates and Amy Satterthwaite (14).
Danielle Hazell picked up two wickets for England, the bulk of the damage was caused by Brindle and the left-arm spin of player of the match Colvin.
Brindle, 29, was making her first England appearance for five years following her self-imposed exile from the international game and finished with figures of 3-11, while the 21-year-old Colvin picked up key early wickets to end with 3-17.
As the visitors faltered in the cloudy conditions, Edwards showed her intent by crashing three boundaries in the first over.
And with excellent support at the other end of the crease by Laura Marsh (24) and Claire Taylor (15), the 31-year-old skipper surged on to hit 40 off 36 balls to steer England to a well-deserved victory.
"We got off to a great start and our spinners created a lot of pressure," said Edwards said. "All credit to our bowlers for restricting their score.
"It's a good start, but we're never totally happy with the way we played. I'm in pretty good nick and I just hope that continues in this tournament. It's a big game against Australia."
England now play the Australians on Saturday in Bristol, while New Zealand and India will battle it out for their first points of the robin-robin phase on the same day at nearby Clifton College.
The final will be played at the Rose Bowl next Monday.