Linsey Smith is expecting the regional summer to end with a bang.
Northern Diamonds spinner Smith believes the ongoing Hundred will have a positive impact on the remaining Charlotte Edwards T20 Cup and Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy games, on both sides of the boundary rope.
Left-armer Smith is currently starring for the Emerald Headingley based Superchargers in the ECB’s new competition, admitting: “I’m definitely pro the Hundred. I love it.”
Smith has been a star for the Superchargers, who have won two from two.
Indian batter Jemimah Rodrigues may have taken the headlines with a pair of half-centuries, but Smith’s contribution to wins over Welsh Fire and Trent Rockets has been immense.
She has returned figures of 3-14 and 1-12 from her respective 20-ball spells.
Firstly, the England fringe spinner feels the Hundred will increase the standard at regional level for the Diamonds and the other seven teams.
“I think you will see things get even better pretty quickly,” she said ahead of the August 25 resumption for the regions.
“Watching the first game of the Hundred at the Oval last week, the standard was fantastic.
“That’s a credit to the way the women’s game has developed with the contracts coming out.
“The girls are getting more hours playing cricket, so it’s inevitable the standard will increase.
“Coming out of the Hundred, I think women’s cricket will only get better and better.”
And off the field, she said: “Hopefully some of the crowds who have been to the Hundred have something to go to afterwards as well.
“Let’s get them to the regional games and have a massive year for women’s cricket.”
Smith is understandably delighted with her form at present, proving a valuable asset for Superchargers captain Lauren Winfield-Hill at the start and end of the innings.
“I’ve said I want to be in those pressure situations,” she said.
“Whether it’s bowling in the first 10 balls or the last 10, that’s where my competitiveness comes out and where I thrive. So far, it’s paid off.
“I’m really happy with my season. I made a few changes to my action working with Dani Hazell in the winter. She’s been unbelievable with me.
“I just feel a lot more comfortable in my action now.
“I was a bit undercooked coming into the season because I had a bit of a back issue. But as soon as I played that first game with the Diamonds, I felt great.
“I’m in a good place with my cricket at the moment and am enjoying it.”
The Superchargers are next in action against cross-Pennine rivals Manchester Originals at Emirates Old Trafford tomorrow afternoon.
The Originals have lost two from two.
Both sides have a heavy regional presence from the Diamonds and Thunder squads.
Last month, the Thunder beat the Diamonds in the opening Charlotte Edwards T20 Cup game at Emerald Headingley.
“The teams are pretty similar,” Smith said ahead of a game on another surface expected to suit spin like Trent Bridge did for the Rockets clash yesterday.
“Thunder definitely did a job on us last time we met, and we haven’t forgotten that.
“We’ll be looking to go three from three with the Superchargers.
“Dani’s already been in my ear saying, ‘Spinning pitch, slow pitch, big boundaries’. I’m looking forward to it.”