England women beat West Indies to gain unassailable lead in ODI series

England women beat West Indies to gain unassailable lead in ODI series - Lauren Bell bowling in the 2nd ODI of CG United One Day Series between West Indies Women and England Women at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium - Daniel Prentice
England women beat West Indies to gain unassailable lead in ODI series - Lauren Bell bowling in the 2nd ODI of CG United One Day Series between West Indies Women and England Women at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium - Daniel Prentice

A career-best 4-33 from Lauren Bell helped England to an unassailable 2-0 lead in their three-match ODI series against West Indies in Antigua.

Seamer Bell’s opening partnership with Kate Cross meant West Indies were eight for four in the third over of their innings as they chased England’s total of 260.

Rashada Williams did steady the ship with a half-century for the hosts but ultimately England eased to a 142-run win – the same margin of victory as the series opener – at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.

Bell praised head coach Jon Lewis for giving the team the freedom to play “without fear” in his first tour in charge. They close out the ODI series on Friday before playing five T20 matches, one in Antigua and four in Barbados.

“It was a great team performance, we’re really proud of the way we played,” said Bell. “Lewy [Jon Lewis] has talked a lot about playing without fear and there being no limit on what we can achieve, I feel like we saw that.

“Personally, I just stuck to my plan and to get a career best in a game that sealed the ODI series is really cool.

“We’re not particularly looking at changing our game plan as we continue the rest of the tour, our minds are on each game as they come and playing with the same aggression and positivity we did today, it's very freeing."

Amy Jones and Sophia Dunkley made half-centuries as England reached 260 all out off 48.1 overs.

England won the toss and chose to bat, with Tammy Beaumont and Emma Lamb making 37 off the first eight overs before Lamb was run out for 25.

That brought Dunkley to the crease and she punished the bowling of Aaliyah Alleyne with a series of boundaries.

After Beaumont went for 21, Nat Sciver made only five but Heather Knight added 25 before Dunkley departed for 57, bowled by Afy Fletcher.

Things did not get any easier for the hosts as Jones replaced her in the middle, hitting eight boundaries in an unbeaten stand of 70 cut short when she ran out of partners.

West Indies got off to a terrible start as Hayley Matthews, Kycia Knight, Alleyne and Shemaine Campbelle fell early.

Williams made some headway for the West Indies but at the other end Shabika Gajnabi faced only four balls before departing for a duck.

A slow stand of 13 runs off 41 balls from Chinelle Henry was the sole positive from there as the rest of the tail was cleaned up by the 31st over, with the hosts all out for 118.

England will be looking to make it 3-0 in the final ODI of this tour at the same venue on Friday, while Maia Bouchier will be part of the squad for the T20 series having been flown out to West Indies to replace Alice Capsey, who was injured in the first ODI. Alice Davidson-Richards has also been added to the IT20 squad.