Mooney blasts Southern Stars to Ashes triumph

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Australia have retained the Women’s Ashes after victory by six wickets in the first T20I left England unable to make up the points difference.

Beth Mooney’s unbeaten 86 was the bedrock of a clinical chase from Australia who had earlier restricted England to 132/9 in their 20 overs.

Having been inserted by Australia England lost key players inside the first two overs with Heather Knight (0) given out caught behind off the second ball of the match after a lengthy deliberation and Sarah Taylor (2) trapped leg before off the first ball of the second over.

Tammy Beaumont (4) and Katherine Brunt (0) also failed before Natalie Sciver (26) and Dani Wyatt steadied the ship.

The pair put on 64 for the fifth wicket to bring England back into the contest at 80 for five.

Wyatt (50) was run out with four overs remaining and England limped to 132/9 as wickets tumbled.

Megan Schutt, who announced her intention to marry her fiancée this week after a landmark plebiscite paved the at for marriage equality in Australia, was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 4/22.

Mooney’s dominance with the willow was such that even as some early wickets fell Australia remained on course for victory throughout.

She struck 11 fours and two sixes on her way to a 56 ball 86 that ensured that Australia would retain the Women’s Ashes.