Women's T20 Challenge: Supernovas pips Velocity in thriller to lift title

Harmanpreet Kaur struck a quickfire 51 off 37 balls as Supernovas edged Velocity in a thrilling last-over finish to lift the title.

Supernovas became the champion, winning by four wickets, off the last ball of the match.   -  IPL

We will, we will rock you.

That immortal rock number by Queens wasn’t played at the Sawai Mansingh Stadium here on Saturday. Maybe, they should have.

For, that was what India’s finest women cricketers, along with some of the biggest overseas stars, did under a starless night, in front of a crowd of over 15,000.

At the end of it, Supernovas became the champion, winning by four wickets, off the last ball of the match, just as Harmanpreet Kaur’s girls did last year. And the captain was fantastic on this night, smashing 51 off 37 balls when it seemed as though the modest total of 121 for six posted by Velocity might be a winning one.

It was Harmanpreet’s sixth-wicket partnership of 51 in 35 balls with Lea Tahuhu – whose contribution was just two runs — that turned the game around in a stunning manner. The skipper though was dismissed with four balls to spare; Hayley Matthews taking a brilliant catch near the rope at deep cover off leg-spinner Amelia Kerr.

Needing one off the last ball, Radha Yadav carved a boundary through the covers to bring up a win.

Superb fightback

Earlier, but for a magnificent fightback from New Zealand all-rounder Amelia Kerr (36, 38b) and wicketkeeper Sushma Verma (40 not out, 32b), the final would have been an embarrassingly short affair. At 37 for five in the eighth over, it had looked Velocity might not even last the distance.

But, Kerr (36) and Sushma Verma (40 not out) showed tremendous grit to rebuild the innings, adding 71 off 65 balls for the sixth wicket. It was sensible, effective batting under pressure.

Earlier,  Velocity got off to the worst possible start. Off the very second ball, Lea Tahuhu, one of the world’s fastest bowlers in women's cricket, had Hayley Matthews caught behind.

‘Keeper Taniya Bhatia, in the very next over, stumped an impatient Danielle Wyatt, who seemed to have made up her mind to step out of her crease against off-spinner Anuja Patil.

Wickets continued to tumble and captain Mithali Raj's dismissal off pacer Natalie Sciver spelt doom.