West Indies Women had their highest-score of their five-match series against South Africa on Thursday (September 16) but still lost by 35 runs to the visitors, who are now one win away from sweeping the series in Antigua.
In the first of two matches to be played at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, South Africa Women were restricted to 185-6 from their 50 overs.
Mignon Du Preez top-scored with an unbeaten 65 that helped South Africa recover from 57-3 and 122-6.
Aaliyah Alleyne, Hayley Matthews and Anisa Mohammed had combined to dismiss the prolific opener Laura Woolvardt for one, Tazmin Brits for 30 and Lara Goodall for nine, as South Africa crawled to 57-3 from their first 20 overs.
Despite the efforts of Du Preez, South Africa had slipped to 122 for 6 by the 36th over as Captain Dane van Niekerk fell for 20 to Cherry-Ann Fraser for 20, Chloe Tryon was dismissed by Shakera Selmon for 12 and Nadine van Niekerk went caught and bowled to Mohammed who finished with figures of 2-26.
However, the middle-order batter managed to hold the innings together and along with Sinalo Jafta, who scored an unbeaten 28, mounted an unbroken stand of 63 for the seventh wicket.
In reply, the West Indies finished on 150-9 from their 50 overs. Rashada Williams top-scored with 42 before she was run out and Deandra Dottin got 22 but the home side never managed to fully recover after slipping to 48-3 in the 17 over.
Hayley Matthews (14) and Kycia Knight (16) were the only other players in double figures for the West Indies as Dane van Niekerk took 3-23 and Masabata Klaas 2-25.
Frustrated right-arm pacer Shakera Selman expressed the ongoing concern of the Caribbean side.
“Honestly, we just went wrong with the bat. Again, we lost two wickets in the Powerplay. We’ve spoken a lot about that we still managed to do it again today, which gave South Africa the upper hand when they were bowling, but I still thought that we should have made that 186,” she said.
“At this stage perhaps it’s mental because we’ve done all the preparations that we could possibly do. The coaches have prepared us well, they’ve worked really hard with us, unfortunately, we just aren’t executing. So we just have to show up bat properly.”
Both teams will return to the same venue on Sunday, September 19 for the fifth and final match of the CG Insurance One Day International Series. First ball is at 10 am local time (9 am Jamaica time).