The Sahara Willowmoore Park is a multi-purpose cricket stadium located in Benoni, South Africa.

Established in 1924, the Sahara Willowmoore Park has a seating capacity of 20,000. It features a state of the art new sub-surface, ring drainage system on the playing area and three new pitches were also laid to improve ground consistency.

The Benoni cricket stadium also comprises a new world class players facility, a four-story Media Centre and a LED electronic scoreboard.

It is the home ground for Easterns Cricket, the South Africa men’s cricket team and the South Africa women’s cricket team. 

The Sahara Willowmoore Park staged its first international fixture, a one-day international (ODI) played between India and Zimbabwe in February 1997. Led by Sachin Tendulkar, India won the game by six wickets.

Since then, it has hosted several high profile cricket matches including 2003 50-over World Cup matches.

The Sahara Willowmoore Park hosted its first women’s international match in March 2005 when the West Indies women’s cricket team beat Sri Lanka Women by eight wickets during an ICC Women’s World Cup clash.

Since then, it has staged five women’s ODIs so far. Let’s have a look at Sahara Willowmoore Park women’s ODI records and stats:

Sahara Willowmoore Park ODI records and stats 

Highest team total

The South Africa women’s cricket team holds the record for the highest team total at the Sahara Willowmoore Park in women’s ODI cricket. During the third ODI of Bangladesh women’s tour of South Africa in 2023, the hosts posted 316/4 in their 50 overs. The Proteas captain Laura Wolvaardt slammed 126 off 134 balls while her opening partner Tazmin Brits scored 118 to help South Africa register a record WODI total at the venue. South Africa Women later bundled out Bangladesh Women for 100 in 31.1 overs to win the game by a massive 216 runs. The hosts won the three-match ODI series 2-1.

Lowest team total

The Bangladesh women’s cricket team recorded the lowest team total at the Sahara Willowmoore Park in women’s ODIs. Chasing 317, the Nigar Sultana-led Bangladesh were bowled out for 100 in 31.1  overs as the visitors suffered a 216-run defeat. Ritu Moni top-scored for Bangladesh with 33 while Fahima Khatun added 15. For South Africa, Ayabonga Khaka and Nadine de Klerk bagged three wickets each to guide the hosts to an ODI series victory.

Most runs

South Africa’s star batter Laura Wolvaardt has scored the most runs at this venue in women’s ODI cricket. The stylish right-handed batter has amassed 187 runs in three matches at an average of 62.33 and a strike rate of 77.27. She has slammed one century and one fifty in the WODI format on this ground. Former South Africa cricketer Lizelle Lee is second on the list with 146 runs in three ODI matches on this ground.

Most wickets

South African all-rounder Marizanne Kapp has picked up the most wickets at the Sahara Willowmoore Park in women’s ODI cricket. Between 2013 and 2013, the right-arm pacer has scalped six wickets in three ODIs at an average of 22.83 and an economy of 4.41. England’s Anya Shrubsole features next on the list with four wickets in the solitary ODI that she has played at this venue.

Highest individual score

South Africa Women captain Laura Wolvaardt registered the highest individual score at this venue in the women’s ODI format. The right-handed batter scored 126 runs off 134 balls during the third ODI of Bangladesh women’s tour of South Africa in 2023. Laura Wolvaardt’s scintillating knock helped the hosts post 316/4 in their 50 overs. Her knock was laced with 13 fours and one six. Wolvaardt’s knock powered the Proteas a thumping victory in  Benoni.

Best bowling figures

England’s Anya Shrubsole recorded the best bowling figures at the Sahara Willowmoore Park in women’s ODI cricket. Anya Shrubsole registered match-winning figures of 4/29 against South Africa during the ICC Women's Championship in 2016. Shrubsole dismissed Laura Wolvaardt, captain Mignon du Preez, Marizanne Kapp and Lizelle Lee to bowl out South Africa for 196 in 49.2 overs. England Women won the game by seven wickets (D/L method).

Highest partnership

South Africa’s Laura Wolvaardt and Tazmin Brits hold the record for the highest partnership at the Sahara Willowmoore Park in women’s ODIs. Laura Wolvaardt and Tazmin Brits forged a brilliant 243-run stand for the opening wicket against Bangladesh in the third ODI in 2023. Wolvaardt  hammered 126 while Brits scored 118 to power South Africa to 316/4 in their 50 overs. The visitors won the match by 216 runs.

Photo credit: Alamy