The Hundred: Alice Capsey stars as Oval Invincibles take second win

By Ffion WynneBBC Sport
Women's Hundred, Lord's
Oval Invincibles 132-7 (100 balls): Capsey 59 (41); Dattani 2-23
London Spirit 117-7 (100 balls): Knight 40 (29); van Niekerk 3-30
Invincibles won by 15 runs
Scorecard; Table

Sixteen-year-old Alice Capsey set up a comfortable victory for the Oval Invincibles against local rivals London Spirit to seal a second success in The Hundred.

Displaying remarkable calmness, the teenager combined power hitting and deft touches to score 59 off just 41 balls in Invincibles' 132-7.

Invincibles' hero from their first game, captain Dane van Niekerk, played second fiddle to the youngster as she absorbed all the pressure from her side being pegged back to 29-3.

But van Niekerk made her impact with the ball in London Spirit's chase, taking three wickets as the home side fell 15 runs short of their target, despite Heather Knight's 29-ball 40.

Just two games in, Oval Invincibles already look like ones of the teams to beat in the women's competition.

The men's game between the two sides was abandoned without a ball being bowled, due to heavy rain shortly after the toss at 14:00 BST.

Both teams will take one point each, with the Invincibles moving top of the men's table, and Spirit earning their first point.

Teenage Capsey stars for the Invincibles

What were you doing at the age of 16?

People will have lots of different answers to that question, but Alice Capsey can say she hit a 50 at Lord's.

The opener played shots all around the ground as she helped the Oval Invincibles recover from losing three early wickets, adding a partnership of 80 with her captain Dane van Niekerk.

Her calmness was what was so surprising - Capsey looked as if she did this sort of thing every day, and her 59 came from just 41 balls.

For context of just how young Capsey is, Invincibles head coach Jonathan Batty actually had to phone her mum in order to ask permission for her daughter to play in the competition.

A former regional tennis player, Capsey chose to focus on cricket and today she chose the perfect place to perform: right in front of England and London Spirit captain, Heather Knight.

"I was absolutely not expecting this exposure. I wasn't expecting to even be in the XI, let alone opening the batting, so it has been a dream come true," Capsey said, after claiming her Match Hero award. "I want to play for England. I want to open, or play top order, for England, across all formats. I want to go as high as I can really."

Phenomenal standards of fielding

A talking point of The Hundred so far has been the fielding, and how much standards have improved in recent years.

Today, that was exemplified - there were wonderful boundary catches from Charlie Dean, Danielle Gibson, Grace Gibbs and Eva Gray, while Mady Villiers gained cheers from the crowd with her array of boundary-saving dives.

And the crowd? Well, that was another positive - the 13,537 in attendance contributing to the biggest attendance in modern history for a domestic match in the UK.

Defeat felt harsh on Spirit all-rounder Danielle Gibson, who smacked 30 off 13 balls, including a six off the final delivery of the match.

What next?

London Spirit are next in action against Trent Bridge at Lord's on Thursday (women's at 14:30 BST, with men's at 18:30), while Oval Invincibles have to wait until Saturday, 31 July to next play, when they travel to Northern Superchargers (women's at 14:30 and men's at 18:00).

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