Hazell insists England will improve

Spinner Dani Hazell promised an improved showing on Sunday after England women slipped to a five-wicket defeat against South Africa at Centurion.

The hosts levelled the series at one apiece ahead of a make-or-break decider on Valentine’s Day, and Hazell says England are determined to improve quickly after suffering their first defeat against the Proteas for 12 years.

Having been reduced to 16 for three, England did well to regain control of the contest as 61 from Heather Knight and some late hitting from Danni Wyatt, Anya Shrubsole and Hazell carried the tourists to 262 for nine.

But South Africa openers Laura Wolfvaardt and Trisha Chetty put on 113 for the first wicket, and although Hazell took two wickets in as many balls, a quick-fire 69 from Lizelle Lee took the game away from England.

“It’s obviously disappointing to lose but to be fair to South Africa they played extremely well today and Lizelle came in and really took the game away from us so I think all credit has to go to them,” Hazell told ecb.co.uk.

“I think there are definitely areas we can work on leading into the third one-day international.

“From the position we were in we’d have been quite happy – Heather Knight batted really well towards the end – we got a few runs to add on so I think we’d have been pretty happy at halfway.

“We’ve got areas to improve; thankfully the game comes around quite quickly so we can get back on the horse and get going again.

“We’ll work hard tomorrow, we’ll look at the areas we didn’t do as well, and we’ll try and put them right hopefully leading into a good third game.”

Hazell was making her return to action from a back injury, and was the pick of the England bowlers with 2-34.

However, a back injury struck another of England’s attack in Katherine Brunt, and with the seamer able to send down just five overs the visitors ran out of options in the closing stages.

“It was exciting to get back on the park,” added the 27-year-old.

“I was quite disappointed my back injury turned up just before the first one-day international and I was really excited today to get back out there.

“It wasn’t quite good enough today from all of us. We went for quite a few in the last 10 overs so I think that’s an area we can look at.

“Our bowling performance wasn’t quite on song today, obviously losing Katherine after five overs isn’t ideal, but these things happen we’ve got to deal with those situations properly.”

Source: ECB

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