Surrey Women started their competitive season with a pair of defeats to Kent at Chipstead, Coulsdon and Walcountians CC.
Playing a double header in the South East group of the ECB County T20 – which saw many of the players in the South East Stars squad coming up against each other for their respective counties – Surrey won the toss in the opening encounter and bowled first, but fell victim to a brutal knock from Kent opener Grace Scrivens who smashed 94 from 62 balls with eleven boundaries and a six.
She received fine support from South East Stars pair Alice Davidson-Richards, who hit a run a ball 36 during a partnership of 104 and Susie Rowe, who upped the pace towards the end of the innings with 24 from 10 balls.
Despite the carnage around her, Surrey captain Hannah Jones got through her four over spell at less than a run a ball.
In reply, Amy Gordon (34 from 26) and Aylish Cranstone (36 from 32), formed a good partnership early on but once they were broken, Surrey quickly fell behind the required rate.
Kira Chatli (27) and wicket keeper Rhianna Southby (20) both made good contributions, but Kent’s large total was always going to take a lot of chasing and Surrey ended up exactly 50 short on 145 at the end of their twenty overs.
The second match produced a far tighter contest, with an intriguing contest going down to the final ball.
Surrey batted first with Alice Capsey (38) and Gordon (29) putting on 52 in good time before 37 more were added by Capsey and Kirstie White (40) for the second wicket.
Chatli (22) again made a telling contribution in the latter stages, as Surrey ended on 152 after twenty overs, short of Kent’s runaway total in the first game but definitely having given their bowlers something to defend.
As Kent chased, Scrivens (30), again proved hard to dislodge but it was Davidson-Richards (63 off 45) who played the key knock for the visitors on this occasion, aided by Kalea Moore, whose pacey 20 off 12 balls – featuring two crucial boundaries off the nineteenth – was vital in setting up the final over, bowled by Jones.
With Davidson-Richards marooned at the other end, six runs were required – which became five off three after the skipper secured two dots from her first three balls.
After getting back to the business end, a pair of twos from Davidson-Richards brought Kent level with one ball to go and Tash Farrant’s side secured their second win of the day from the very last ball, Davidson-Richards surviving an impassioned LBW shout from Jones to scamper through for a single after a planned reverse sweep did not go entirely to plan.
Surrey Women are next in action against Essex on Bank Holiday Monday (May 3rd) in another T20 double header at Garon Park CC in Southend on Sea.