T20 tri-series: Indian women convert catches, defeat England

The team finally got off the mark in the tourney with an eight-wicket victory over England in the dead rubber in Mumbai.

Indians are cock-a-hoop over a dismissal on Thursday. England was bowled out for 107.   -  PTI

India’s fielders displayed courage and athleticism to snaffle superb catches and the fielding effort was embellished by the excellence of wicket-keeper Taniya Bhatia as the host finally managed to win a match. It downed England emphatically in what was a dead rubber in the T20 tri-series at the Brabourne Stadium here on Thursday.

Having been defeated twice by Australia and once by England without much fight, the home team led by Harmanpreet Kaur looked at the last match of the tri-series as a chance to perhaps only gain match experience. The team, however, surprised a small group of supporters and possibly even themselves with a terrific display in both halves of the contest.

Rapid chase

Left-hander Smriti Mandhana scored a lovely half-century, her third in the last four games; she was on 62 not out when the umpire signalled a wide from left-arm spinner Alexandra Hartley and thereby ushered in India victory. India raced to the target of 108 in 15.4 overs and will look to take on England in the three-match ODI series in Nagpur with poise.

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Beaten hollow by Australia on Wednesday, England chose to bat in order to get some batting practice and make a strong finish. However, on a fresh pitch that tended to play slow, England’s batsmen came a cropper. Mithali Raj took a catch deep on the off-side to send back opener Amy Jones, but it was off-spinner Deepti Sharma’s catch that began England’s procession — Deepti had latched on to the ball that came off a hard-hit shot from Danielle Wyatt with two hands off her own bowling.

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After removing the most dangerous Danielle who had two Twenty20 centuries to her credit, Jhulan Goswami got into the act, running many yards in front and converting a catch at square leg. Then, as England was struggling to repair all the damage caused by the spinners, Harmanpreet Kaur picked up a one-hander, diving at long-off to send back Danielle Hazell.

Carefree Smriti

The home team’s remarkable fielding hastened England’s collapse for 107 with seven balls remaining. England’s small score set an asking rate of more than five per over, but Smriti, not perturbed by the exit of Mithali Raj and Jemimah Rodrigues, played her shots (8x4 and 1x6) freely to win a match that seemed improbable after three straight defeats.

“In any format of the game, if a team is able to take wickets on a regular basis, the opponent is going to be under pressure. Today the wicket was different, a bit slow and the spinners were able to get a little bit grip on it. We have the best spinners in the world. Today we bowled to a plan, in the right areas. It was a good day for us,” said Jhulan Goswami.

The scores
  • England 107 in 18.5 overs (Danielle Wyatt 31; Anuja Patil three for 21, Radha Yadav two for 16, Deepti Sharma two for 24, Poonam Yadav two for 17) lost to India 108 for 2 in 15.4 overs (Smriti Mandhana 62 not out, Harmanpreet Kaur 20 not out; Danielle Hazell two for 17).

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