Sophie Ecclestone starred as England cruised to victory in their final warm-up fixture ahead of the Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa.

Ecclestone, from Chester, spoke to Merseysportlive after taking 3-19 against New Zealand in Cape Town.

And the ICC number one ranked T20i bowler praised the squad’s confidence leading into Saturday’s opener against the West Indies.

“We’ve got such a great squad of players. Any one of our squad can play the games and do a great job for the team,” said Ecclestone.

It builds on Monday’s high-scoring win over South Africa, where three England batters made half centuries.

The slow left arm spinner did not bowl in that game due to side stiffness but confirmed she is now fully recovered.

Sophie Ecclestone
Ecclestone in action for Alvanley. Pic courtesy of Alvanley CC

Among the other bowlers to impress was Lancashire teammate Kate Cross, who took two early wickets.

Ecclestone admitted: “We really love each other doing well. It’s really nice that we can celebrate each other’s success.”

Under the leadership of former men’s Test bowling coach, Jon Lewis, the side have been playing with freedom.

“He’s told us to play fearless cricket,” said Ecclestone.

Currently second in the ICC T20i rankings, standing in England’s way will be number one ranked Australia.

The record five time winners have beaten them three times in the competition’s final since England won the inaugural tournament back in 2009.

Nonetheless, Ecclestone is feeling the support back home.

Alvanley CC in Cheshire is where she made her cricketing debut, and the England international said the clubhouse will be screening Saturday’s opener. 

Sophie Ecclestone
Sophie Ecclestone playing for Alvanley Cricket Club (Image: Courtesy of Alvanley Cricket Club)

“It’s obviously amazing,” she added.

“I’m sure I will get a few messages over the coming days from people back home.”

Alongside World Cup glory, the lifelong Evertonian is hoping for a Toffees win in Monday’s Merseyside derby.

“I think I might go bombing into the pool at midnight or something ridiculous,” she joked.

And while representing her country means wearing Liverpool red, it would be a small price to pay if they go on to lift the World Cup in Cape Town at the end of the month.

“I’ll take wearing red any day of the week for that,” she said.

(Featured pic credit to Bahnfrend under Creative Commons licence)