Steyn, de Klerk, Tucker lead South Africa Emerging fightback to draw level

Andrie Steyn (l) and Delmi Tucker in action for South Africa Emerging. © Cricket South Africa/Zimbabwe Cricket

Strong batting show led by captain Andrie Steyn and Nicole de Klerk and multi-faceted contribution from Delmi Tucker helped South Africa Emerging beat Thailand in the fourth one-dayer to draw level in the five-game series on Saturday (September 11).

Steyn opted to bat first in Potchefstroom and got South Africa Emerging off to a strong start. Along with de Klerk, she added 125 for the opening wicket in just 24 overs. De Klerk got to her half century before being trapped in front by Suleeporn Laomi for 50 off 71 balls.

Steyn then found another partner in no.3 Saarah Smith, with whom she added 39. In the process the captain completed her fifty as well. However, a mix-up meant that she was run out for 79 and Smith (42) too followed her in similar fashion three overs later.

From a comfortable two for 181, South Africa Emerging found themselves at five for 202, thanks to Laomi (3/66) and Thipatcha Putthawong (1/28). However, Tucker took the home team closer to the 250-run mark before she fell for 32 off 33 balls.

Tucker then returned to provide the breakthrough with the ball when Thailand were coasting in the sixth over with the score on 31. She got Nattaya Boochatham stumped for 12 off just nine balls while Leah Jones dismissed birthday girl Nannapat Koncharoenkai for 16.

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In Nattakan Chantham, the tourists believed as she had scored back-to-back tons. But Tucker was at it again when she bowled Chantham for 42 to leave Thailand reeling at four for 79.

Captain Naruemol Chaiwai and former skipper Sornnarin Tippoch then resurrected the innings and brought them in the hunt with their 76-run partnership for the fifth wicket. Tippoch made 38 before she became Jones’ second victim.

Meanwhile, Chaiwai continued her impressive form and threatened to take Thailand home with a sublime knock. But her innings was stalled on 80 by Jane Winster in the final over, as Thailand fell short by 23.

Brief Scores: South Africa Emerging 254/8 in 50 overs (Andrie Steyn 79, Nicole de Klerk 50, Saarah Smith 42; Suleeporn Laomi 3/66) beat Thailand 231/8 in 50 overs (Naruemol Chaiwai 80, Nattakan Chantham 42, Sornnarin Tippoch 38; Delmi Tucker 3/37, Leah Jones 2/41)