Cricket: England began their preparations for the ICC Women’s World Cup in style, defeating South Africa by 51 runs in a warm-up match in Mumbai.
Skipper Charlotte Edwards scored 78 as England posted 270 for nine. South Africa could only manage 219 for six from 50 overs in reply.
Heather Knight scored 42 while Lydia Greenaway hit 35 as England proved too strong for their opponents.
England play again today, against New Zealand, before their opening match of the tournament against Sri Lanka on Friday.
The competition opens on Thursday when India play the West Indies in Mumbai. The final is scheduled for February 17.
Knight, whose England side are defending champions, said the match had been useful preparation.
“Charlotte batted well up front, laid a platform for the lower order to get a decent total on the board,” she told ecb.co.uk.
“And then the bowlers got overs under their belts and it was good to get miles in the legs in the field.
“There wasn’t a huge amount of turn out here, but I think Holly bowled particularly well and just hit her areas.”
England had been due to play Pakistan until a schedule change by the ICC. Knight said the players were unfazed by the switch. “A warm-up game is a warm-up game, so it’s good to get out there,” she added.
“We’ve got two back-to-back games. It might be a bit of a challenge but we’ll be fresh as we can tomorrow and I’m looking forward to playing New Zealand.”
Elsewhere Australia posted 333 for five in beating West Indies by 135 runs at Mumbai’s Middle Income Group Ground.
This year’s event marks the 10th edition of the Women’s World Cup, which has been running since 1973, two years longer than the men’s event.