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Match Preview: South East Stars vs. The Blaze

South East Stars will face The Blaze at The County Ground, Beckenham in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy play-off on Thursday 21 September.

Stars qualified for the play-off after a resounding victory over Central Sparks on Saturday.

The winner of Thursday’s play-off will face the Southern Vipers in Sunday’s final at The County Ground, Northampton.


Matchday Information

The match will start at 10:30, with entry & parking at The County Ground, Beckenham FREE for all spectators.

We strongly advise that all Members & spectators travelling to the ground make use of public transport.

The County Ground, Beckenham is located approximately seven miles from central London.

View The County Ground guide

The County Ground, Beckenham is a cashless venue.


Weather forecast

BECKENHAM WEATHER


Live Match Centre

South East Stars vs. The Blaze will be live streamed & embedded into the Match Centre on the Kent Cricket website. Pictures will be coming via South East Stars’ YouTube Channel.

View Match Centre


South East Stars

  • Captain: Bryony Smith
  • Head Coach: Johann Myburgh
  • 2022 finish: Play-off finalists
  • 2022 highest run scorer: Bryony Smith 226
  • 2022 highest wicket taker: Alice Davidson-Richards and Eva Gray (nine)

South African all-rounder Paige Scholfield has been the big arrival over the winter from rivals Southern Vipers. Her 11 wickets at 20 apiece, plus 175 runs at 25 were key to guiding Vipers to the final of this competition last season.  Scholfield will fill the void left by the exit of Eva Gray to Sunrisers, while Chloe Brewer and wicketkeeper Rhianna Southby have departed for Central Sparks and Southern Vipers respectively.

  • The big question: How many players will Stars lose to England duty? They were heavily impacted last year and Sophia Dunkley and Alice Capsey look shoo-ins again this time. Smith, Freya Davies and Alice Davidson-Richards all spent time with England too in 2022, so Stars will want to make hay over the first five rounds of games in May before their squad depth is tested by such call-ups.

Aside from the usual suspects keep an eye on wicketkeeper Kira Chathli. The 23-year-old south Londoner firmly established herself as Stars’ No 1 behind the timbers in 2022, leading to the departure of previous incumbent Rhianna Southby. There was also a first List-A half-century and some quick cameos in the Charlotte Edwards Cup suggesting a leap forward bat in hand to go with her developing glove-work.

Final thought: Stars were the nearly franchise of 2022, losing out in playoff/semi-finals of both competitions. The batting misfired in both instances, in the case of the Rachel Heyhoe Flint Trophy, when they were weakened by England call-ups. With the final set for September – soon after the conclusion of the England versus Sri Lanka one-day series – Stars will hope they can get that far and then go one step further.


The Blaze

  • Captain: Kirstie Gordon
  • Head Coach: Chris Guest
  • 2022 finish: Sixth
  • 2022 highest runscorer: Kathryn Bryce (233)
  • 2022 highest wicket-taker: Grace Ballinger & Kirstie Gordon (nine)

Blaze, the new name for the Lightning team that finished sixth last season, have also bolstered their squad by signing World Cup stars Nat Sciver-Brunt and Sarah Glenn to join their England team-mate Tammy Beaumont, with South African all-rounder Nadine de Klerk, capped 61 times for her country across all formats, coming in as an important overseas addition.

  • The big question: Can the new arrivals give the team under its new identity the edge it needs to turn competitive performances into wins? Sciver-Brunt may not be available too often but Blaze will hope that the experience of De Klerk, part of the South African team that downed England in the semi-finals of the Women’s World Cup, and Glenn – on the losing side that day – can make a significant impact on results, as well as helping younger team-mates grow their game.

After a couple of seasons among the weaker teams in the women’s regional competitions, having a new home may be as important to the East Midlands side as a new name. The switch to Trent Bridge from Loughborough University puts the squad on a more professional footing, which head coach Chris Guest hopes will hope the many talented prospects in his group to realise their potential.


International T20 cricket is back at The Spitfire Ground after 12 years next Summer!

International T20 cricket will return to Canterbury on Thursday 11 July 2024 when The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence hosts the 3rd match in England’s IT20 series against New Zealand.

It is only the second time that Canterbury has hosted a Women’s International T20 match in its long history, and will be another boost for the continued growth of women’s cricket in Kent.

Enter the ballot to secure your tickets now!

Enter WIT20 ticket ballot here

Please note: there is only one entry per e-mail address supplied. Duplicate entries will not be counted.