Suzie Bates hopes to rescue Southern Vipers with back-to-back wins

Danni Wyatt struck 27 from 20 deliveries for the Southern Vipers against Western Storm
Danni Wyatt struck 27 from 20 deliveries for the Southern Vipers against Western Storm
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Suzie Bates knows her Southern Vipers face an uphill struggle to qualify for Kia Super League finals day.

That’s after their clash with table-toppers Western Storm in Bristol on Saturday was abandoned.

Heavy rain put paid to the battle – a re-run of last season’s grand final – with fewer than nine overs bowled.

The Vipers, who now prop up the six-team group, were 62 for two at that point after they had been asked to bat.

England star Tammy Beaumont had earlier been dismissed for a first-ball duck – bowled by Freya Davies.

Danni Wyatt led the fightback with 27 from 20 balls, including three fours and one six. Meanwhile, Bates was left not out on 26 off 24 deliveries when the rain returned and the umpires called time.

The Vipers must now win their remaining two fixtures and hope other results go their way to finish in the top three and reach a third successive finals day.

Skipper Bates said: ‘Saturday’s result makes it difficult for us to qualify now.

‘We needed to go to Bristol and win and I thought we made a pretty good start.

‘After all the good weather we’ve had, it’s annoying for this to happen.

‘But there is nothing we can do about it.

‘All we can do is win our remaining games and hope it’s enough.’

The Vipers return to action against Surrey Stars at Hove tomorrow (2.30pm).

They then complete their round-robin campaign with the visit of Lancashire Thunder to the Ageas Bowl on Saturday (7pm).

Western Storm skipper Heather Knight won the toss and asked the Vipers to bat on Saturday.

And they struck an early blow when Beaumont gave Davies the charge only to lose her off stump.

But the formidable Bates and Wyatt redressed the balance, racking up 45 runs in the power-play.

The second-wicket pair were moving smoothly through the gears when a rain break halted their momentum.

Wyatt then bottom-edged a cut into the gloves of Rachel Priest to give Danielle Gibson a wicket upon the resumption.

Bates picked up the cudgels – as Mignon du Preez joined her at the crease – before returning rain forced the players off once more.

The match was finally abandoned at 4.45pm.

The Vipers trail third place by six points with a maximum of five on offer for a win.