England vow to bounce back after losing Women's Ashes opener in Australia

Frank Dalleres
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Australia v England - 1st Women's ODI
Alex Blackwell (right) top-scored for Australia with 67 not out (Source: Getty)

England captain Heather Knight has backed the tourists to respond after they lost the first Women’s Ashes clash in Australia on Sunday.

Australia beat England by two wickets in the opening one-day international in Brisbane – the first of seven contests in the multi-format series – to take a two-point lead.

Knight admitted her side had begun the series poorly but predicted a response, citing their World Cup triumph earlier this year, which also came after a sluggish start.

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“We lost the first game of the World Cup,” she said. “One thing about this team is we are a resilient bunch and we’ll get ourselves up for the next game. We were a little bit off the pace, a little bit of rustiness and things to iron out for the next game.”

Opener Lauren Winfield top-scored with 48 and put on 56 for the second wicket alongside Sarah Taylor as England made a modest 228-8 from their innings.

Off-spinner Ashleigh Gardner took 3-47 for the Ashes holders, while Australia’s spinners proved miserly.

Vice-captain Alex Blackwell made the most of being dropped on 36 to plunder an unbeaten 67 that steered the hosts towards their target after they had slipped to 87-4.

Gardner’s 27 off 18 balls raised the tempo and Australia clinched the win with five deliveries to spare.

The second one-day international is on Thursday.

“We were way off our usual standard in the field,” Knight added. “That’s why we’re so frustrated, because we feel it was our game to win. Credit to Australia, they finished the job off, but ideally the fielding will be slightly better in the next game.”

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