Ashleigh Gardner takes 8 wickets, gives Australia women's Ashes lead over England  

Defeat at Trent Bridge gives England a mountain to climb if they are to reclaim the Ashes.

Published: 26th June 2023 07:41 PM  |   Last Updated: 26th June 2023 07:41 PM   |  A+A-

Australia's Ashleigh Gardner celebrates after taking the wicket of England's Danni Wyatt to win the first Women's Ashes test match at Trent Bridge, Nottingham, England, June 26, 2023. (Photo | AP)


Ashleigh Gardner took eight wickets in England's second innings as Australia's women secured victory in the one-off Ashes Test match by 89 runs on Monday.

Chasing the highest run chase in women's Test history of 268 to win, England were all out for 178 as Gardner took all five wickets to fall on the final day.

Defeat at Trent Bridge gives England a mountain to climb if they are to reclaim the Ashes.

Australia's Test win is worth four points in the multi-format series with three one-day internationals and T20 matches to come, each worth two points.

The Australians are world champions in both white-ball formats and also proved just too good with the red ball after a tight contest that went all five days in front of record crowds for a women's Test in England.

The previous three women's Ashes Tests had finished as a draw with only four days allocated for play.

And Gardner said the value of adding a fifth day was shown in getting a result.

"I wouldn't have dreamt of it to be honest but it showed having five days in a Test to actually get a result is super important," said Gardner, who was named player of the match.

"I guess there was a little bit of luck with the conditions out there but as a whole bowling unit, we bowled really well throughout and tried to bowl in partnerships.

"I guess I was the lucky one to come away with the wickets."

England are looking to win the Ashes for the first time since 2014 and captain Heather Knight believes her side showed they can at least compete with Australia.

Tammy Beaumont's 208 set England women's highest ever Test score in the first innings as only 10 runs separated the sides at the halfway stage.

But the England bowling attack let Australia off to a flying start in their second innings, which proved costly.

"What a game," said Knight. "I've been quite vocal about five days and today shows why.

"Credit to Australia, they were outstanding, but we went toe-to-toe with them for a long time."

Gardner's three wickets towards the end of play on Sunday left England up against it at 116-5 overnight.

The hosts added 25 to their tally before Kate Cross edged behind off Gardner.

Amy Jones added just four before she was stumped but Danni Wyatt's half-century got the target down to double figures with three wickets still in hand.

However, those final three wickets fell for just three runs as Gardner removed Sophie Ecclestone, Lauren Filer and Wyatt for figures of 8-66 in the innings and 12-165 in the match.

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