Deepti Sharma leads East against Minnu Mani’s South in the final of Senior Women’s Inter Zonal Multi-Day Trophy

East Zone beat Harmanpreet’s North to face South led by Minnu Mani in the summit clash at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium.

Published : Apr 08, 2024 21:46 IST , PUNE - 3 MINS READ

File Photo: Deepti Sharma playing red-ball cricket for India in a Test match against Australia.
File Photo: Deepti Sharma playing red-ball cricket for India in a Test match against Australia. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/ The Hindu

File Photo: Deepti Sharma playing red-ball cricket for India in a Test match against Australia. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/ The Hindu

It has been a fruitful return to red ball cricket for the Indian women’s domestic vertical with the Senior Women’s Inter Zonal Multi Day Trophy.

Come Tuesday, East Zone led by Deepti Sharma and South Zone led by Minnu Mani will fight for long format supremacy in the summit clash at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium here. 

South along with a Harmanpreet Kaur-led North Zone side had made a direct entry to the semifinal stage by virtue of a draw of lots.

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North suffered a crushing 135-run defeat at the hands of Deepti and Co in the semifinal last week while Minnu’s side, despite a draw against Smriti Mandhana-led West Zone, booked a spot in the final courtesy a first innings lead.

Road to the final

East comes into the final with more match time under its belt. Having played the quarterfinal, where it beat North East by an innings and 120 runs, the side will hope to carry the momentum forward as it goes up against a sprightly South unit.

East bulldozed North East in its fixture, which saw Dhara Gujjar score a brilliant ton with useful cameos from skipper Deepti, keeper-batter Uma Chetry and Durga Murmu in the lone innings they batted through. The side declared on 385/8, a score North East could barely match even after being made to follow on. Deepti was the pick of the bowlers with a match haul of seven wickets in the quarterfinal.

North’s bowlers gave East a harder time in the semifinal clash, bowling the latter out just 132 in the first innings. However, Mamta Paswan (with a fifer) and Deepti (with four wickets, including the prized catch of skipper Harmanpreet) bowled their opponent out for 144. Dhara’s half century paved the way for a competitive 282/9 in the second innings. Shafali Verma’s effort of 49 had little help from the rest of her side barring a 22-run cameo from Sushma Verma as Deepti’s six-wicket haul helped her side to a big win and a place in the final.

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Sajeevan Sajana’s WPL momentum carried into the Interzonal MultiDay Trophy as she scored a 130-ball 74, aiding Arundhati Reddy who scored a 166-ball 85 to take South to 289 in the first innings of the semifinal clash against West.

Smriti, who opens in international cricket, dropped herself down in both fixtures West played in the tournament. Against South, she came in at no.5 after Devika Vaidya and Yastika Bhatia had given the team’s response an early push.

Smriti’s 57-ball 30 along with Radha Yadav’s unbeaten 67-ball 39 pushed West to 230. South batted out the final day, with the match ending in a draw, Tamanna Nigam (99 off 200 balls) and Miriyala Durga (81 off 205) grinding out the result for their side. A 59-run first innings lead came in handy for Minnu and Co.

All eyes will be on Deepti in this summit clash. She leads the wicket chart with 17 wickets from two games and will hope to add to that tally against South. That said, this is also a good chance for players vying for an India cap to show their mettle in the longest format of the game with India showing an interest in more international red ball cricket over the past few years.

Live Streaming or broadcast has not been made available for the tournament which has featured the cream of the women’s ecosystem represent their respective zones. 

South Zone: Roshni Kiran , M Durga (wk), G Kamalini, Tamanna Nigam, Minnu Mani (c), Arundhati Reddy, S Sajana, Sunanda, S Anusha, Sahana S Pawar, Shabnam, Poorva Bhaidkar, Sonal, Purvaja P Verlekar, Trisha Poojitha
East Zone: Deepti Sharma (c), Monikha Das, Uma Chetry (WK), Dhara Gujjar, Suravi S Roy, Durga Murmu, Rizu Saha, Sushree Dibyadarshini, Titas Sadhu, Mamta Paswan, Saika Ishaque, Rachna Singh, Richa, Annapurna Banamali Das, Tanmayee Beher
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