|European Women's Under 17 Championship: The Netherlands, July 2009|
Wilkinson stars with bat and ball as Scots prove too strong for the Dutch
Scotland out-played hosts The Netherlands in the opening match of the European Women’s Under 17 championship, proving too strong in all departments of the game as they ran out comfortable winners by 118 runs.
Openers Lois Wilkinson and Priyanaz Chatterji laid the foundations of their victory with a fine century stand after Lynne Dickson had won the toss and elected to bat, but in truth the Dutch contributed to their situation with a plethora of wides and several dropped catches.
Christine Erkelens tried eight bowlers in her attempt to secure a breakthrough, but it was left to the baby of the tournament, 12-year-old Roos Dickmann, to claim the first wicket when she bowled Wilkinson for a patient 20.
Chatterji went on to top score with 44, while Dickson hit a rapid 25-ball 26 to raise the tempo of her side’s innings.
Thereafter wickets started to tumble as the Scots tried to push the scoring rate along, Erkelens picking up two for 25 and Maxime Entrop three for 47 as the total reached 192 for eight by the end of the allotted 40 overs.
The Scottish new-ball attack of Elizabeth Priddle and Samantha Haggo also bowled their share of wides, but they were otherwise more effective in conditions which had become more conducive to seam bowling.
Haggo achieved the first breakthrough when she had Erkelens caught behind by Lorna Jack, and although Coco Steenstra Toussaint, Tamara Gruter and then Miranda Veringmeier kept the scoreboard ticking over, once Priddle removed the latter two the Dutch reply began to fall apart.
But the trigger for a real collapse was the introduction of off-spinner Wilkinson into the attack.
She immediately accounted for Hester Offerman and Entrop, and then worked her way through the tail to finish with the remarkable figures of six for 10 from just 28 deliveries.
One significant difference between the sides was that the Scots held their catches, three of them off Wilkinson.
Supported as well by Nadia Wheeler at the other end, she sent The Netherlands plunging from 57 for three to 74 all out in the space of less than ten overs, to complete a comprehensive Scottish victory.
Close observers throughout were the Irish squad, who meet Scotland on Tuesday in a match which seems likely to have a crucial effect on the eventual outcome of this tournament.