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Brunt on 'beamers' incident

By Doug O'Kane, Sports Editor Thursday 16th January 2014
Katherine Brunt.

Former Barnsley CC player Katherine Brunt says she went through the most difficult day of her sensational career and felt like she had let her country down last Saturday when she was removed from England Women's attack by the umpire for sending down two head high 'beamers' against Australia in the Ashes Test.


Two balls slipped out of the Dodworth fast bowler's hand during the second day when temperatures reached 50 degrees celsius and she was not allowed to add to her nine overs in the first innings at the WACA in Perth.


But her colleagues battled on and Brunt returned in Australia's second innings to take the first and last wicket and secure a victory in the only Test which puts the tourists 6-0 up in the Ashes series.


Brunt told the Chronicle: "I would challenge anyone to bowl perfectly in 50 degree heat.  It was a combination of a lack of form from my part, and the heat and the sweat. It was hard even to bowl in a straight line. The umpire said he knew I didn't do it intentionally but it was very hard for me to take. It was tough mentally.


"I have been the main strike bowler all my career so to be out of action for such an important innings was horrible.  I felt like I had failed the team and that I could potentially be responsible for us going 6-0 down. I had to stay on the field for the next three hours and field.  It was probably the most difficult thing I have been through. But the other girls did really well and it was a great result in the end."


Brunt admits she is not at her best but hopes her bowling improves during the three One Day International matches and three Twenty20 games. There are two points given to the winners of each of those limited overs games which means that England – who are already 6-0 up – could have won the Ashes with an unassailable 10-0 lead by Thursday if they take the first two 50-over contests.


Brunt said: "It would be great to have won the series by Thursday then we would go on and try to get a whitewash for the whitewash that the men got."


Brunt joked that head coach Paul Shaw, who is also from Barnsley, didn't sleep for four days during the Test. Shaw told the Chronicle: "It was a high-pressure game which swung each way throughout the four days. But we came out on top during the pressure moments. Very few touring teams have won at the WACA over the years so we can be very proud.  We have restored a bit of pride after the men lost 5-0 in their series. The Australian media and public are very much behind their team which makes it tough for us but we expected that."