England opener Tammy Beaumont shined with a scintillating knock of 97 from just 65 balls as England cruised to victory in the first T20I against New Zealand by 46 runs. The hosts now have a 1-0 lead in the three-match T20I series.
Tammy struck 13 fours and a six in front of a huge Chelmsford crowd. She fell short of a second T20I century after being dismissed by Hayley Jensen on the second-last ball of the innings. But her 97 was good enough in helping England post 184/4 in 20 overs.
Tammy was ably supported by Amy Jones (31 runs off 15 balls) and Sophia Dunkley (23 not out off 17 balls) in a batting line-up missing regular captain Heather Knight due to a hamstring injury.
New Zealand, in their first international outing since April, crumbled under massive scoreboard pressure. Openers Suzie Bates and Sophie Devine were dismissed in 2.2 overs. The third-wicket partnership of 48 runs between Amy Satterthwaite and Maddy Green promised a fightback.
But left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone took out Green, starting a slide for New Zealand's batting. At one point, they were in danger of being bowled out for less than 100. The lower-order provided some resistance before being bowled out for 138 in 18.5 overs.
The second T20I between the two teams will take place at Hove on Saturday.
Brief scores: England 184/4 in 20 overs (Tammy Beaumont 97, Amy Jones 31, Hayley Jensen 2/26) beat New Zealand 138 all out in 18.5 overs (Amy Satterthwaite 43, Maddy Green 19, Katherine Brunt 2/9, Sophie Ecclestone 2/24) by 46 runs.