Vipers Become Kia Super League Champions

Suzie Bates' fifty helped Southern Vipers defeat Western Storm by seven wickets in the KSL final at Chelmsford

Suzie Bates (52) scored a memorable fifty to help the Southern Vipers chase down Western Storm’s 141-run target and secure an historic victory in the Kia Super League final at Chelmsford.

Player of the Match Bates hit 52 off 46 balls and combined superbly with Charlotte Edwards (24) to produce an opening stand of 78 runs, after Arran Brindle’s (2-15) bowling restricted Storm to 140-5.

Lydia Greenway (17*) hit the winning runs alongside Sara McGlashan (21*), driving the ball down the ground and onto the boundary to seal an unforgettable win for the Vipers, with seven balls to spare.

The Ageas Bowl-based side began well with the ball, with Tash Farrant and Morna Nielsen going for just two runs each off their opening overs. Western Storm finished the powerplay on 34-0 though, as New Zealand batsman Rachel Priest (57) picked up the strike rate alongside in-form opening partner Stafanie Taylor (35).

Arran Brindle supplied the breakthrough for the Vipers and claimed the key wickets of Taylor and Heather Knight (6), as Charlotte Edwards comfortably pocketed Storm’s danger batsman in the 11th over and George caught the England captain.

Having been on the back foot at the half way stage, Bates swung the game in the Vipers’ favour by ending a superb fifty knock from Priest, caught at deep midwicket by Greenway, and bowling Luff (2) in the final over.

The Vipers could take gratification from restricting Storm to 141, especially given that Priest looked capable of going on to do more damage. However, it would be a tough ask for Bates and Edwards, who opened the batting terrifically, surpassing the efforts of Priest of Taylor, whose partnership ended on 74.

The experienced duo batted freely during the powerplay and reached their fifty partnership at the end of the seventh over, matching Storm’s score of 50 without loss going into the eighth.

Bates continued to bat with fine resolve, calm and efficiency as she surpassed her personal fifty, leaving the Vipers needing 58 off 54 balls, after Edwards was bowled by Dibble.

McGlashan took the reins and fired Vipers back on top after losing their openers and big-hitting Adams (15), helped along by Greenway, who found the boundary with real intent in the 18th over. Just six runs were required from the final 12 deliveries. 

With seven balls remaining, Greenway drove the penultimate ball of the 19th over down the ground to the sound of adulation and relief from the Vipers camp, becoming champions of the inaugural Kia Super League.