Last Updated: 21/07/19 5:49pm
Australia have taken an unassailable 8-2 point lead in the Women’s Ashes with three T20Is remaining
Australia have retained the Women’s Ashes after securing a draw in the only Test of the multi-format series in Taunton.
SCORECARD | AS IT HAPPENED
Ellyse Perry struck an unbeaten 76 as the Southern Stars batted out 64 overs on the final day to take an 8-2 points lead in the multi-format series, and with just six points available from the remaining three T20Is, ensuring they kept hold of the trophy once more.
Heather Knight’s side had declared 24.1 overs into the day on 275-9 with a deficit of 145, Nat Sciver falling 12 runs short of a maiden red-ball century, as England looked to set up a chance to push for an unlikely win in Somerset.
Spinner Laura Marsh claimed openers Alyssa Healy (13) and Rachael Haynes (1), the latter promoted up the order in place of the injured Nicole Bolton, in the first over after lunch.
However, Perry’s exceptional defence removed any worry of a complete collapse as the teams shook hands at 5.30pm to bring an end to the match to the delight of Meg Lanning and her side.
Too little too late for attacking England
There was a clear change in the hosts’ mindset on Sunday, scoring 11 boundaries in the 24.1 overs they batted in the first session of the last day.
Sciver (88), Anya Shrubsole (11) and Laura Marsh (28) put on 76 runs in 24.1 overs before England declared with 15 minutes to bowl before lunch.
The loss of Sciver, bowled by Jess Jonassen having looked to play a length ball down to third man but only succeeding in bottom-edging the delivery from the spinner onto her stumps.
With England still 19 runs away from avoiding the follow-on, Marsh smoked Sophie Molineux for back-to-back boundaries and then chopped the spinner through the covers for four more to take them past the 272 they needed to force Australia to bat again.
Perry’s status rises to new levels
After making the declaration with 81 overs left in the day, England enjoyed the ideal start to the afternoon session when Marsh bowled Healy with the second ball after lunch and then trapped the promoted Haynes plumb in front.
Captain Lanning looked to settle in for the rest of the day, making 21 off 58 balls.