IND vs ENG, Women’s Test: Batters dominate day 1, put India in command at 410/7

Shubha Satheesh, Jemimah Rodrigues, Yastika Bhatia and Deepti Sharma struck fifties as India became just the second team to score 400 runs or more in a day in women’s Tests.

Published : Dec 14, 2023 18:22 IST , MUMBAI - 4 MINS READ

Shubha Satheesh of India in action on Day 1 of Test match between India (Women) and England (Women).
Shubha Satheesh of India in action on Day 1 of Test match between India (Women) and England (Women). | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

Shubha Satheesh of India in action on Day 1 of Test match between India (Women) and England (Women). | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

Debutant Shubha Satheesh led a commanding batting display by the Indian middle order with the host finishing day one of the one-off Test against England firmly in the driver’s seat at 410/7 at the D.Y. Patil Stadium here on Thursday.

After opting to bat, a solid 76-ball 69 from Shubha rattled the visitor’s plans of capitalising after removing the openers early. While Shafali Verma looked the more nervy of the two, Smriti Mandhana fell first, to a delivery from Lauren Bell that left her with no room and rocked back to rearrange the stumps. Shafali fell soon after, clean bowled by Kate Cross whose top-of-off line breached Shafali’s defence and sent the off stump cartwheeling.

Shubha got off the mark on her second delivery in international cricket, driving Lauren Bell to the boundary through cover. She teamed up with Jemimah Rodrigues, who also made her Test debut, to stitch a valuable 115-run stand in 146 balls for the third wicket.

In the 11th over, she got down on one knee to drive a fuller ball past bowler Kate Cross, holding the pose for the photographers. She got to her maiden half century off the same bowler with a similar full-faced drive down the ground. Her confidence in neutralising the probing lines as well as the shorter deliveries from the English pace attack helped Jemimah settle in at the other end. The Mumbai batter anchored one end and kept the runs trickling in at a healthy rate, with impeccable timing and placement especially through the offside.

Shubha eventually had a momentary lapse of focus and holed out to Nat Sciver-Brunt at mid-wicket while trying to negotiate the bounce on a shorter delivery from Sophie Ecclestone. Jemimah fell soon after Bell took out her middle stump.

However, India continued unfazed. Each time a partnership broke, another was nurtured to take its place. Skipper Harmanpreet Kaur and keeper-batter Yastika Bhatia steadied the ship with a fifth-wicket stand worth 115 runs. Harmanpreet would have registered her maiden Test fifty but a freak runout once again proved to be her undoing. Her bat got stuck in the pitch as she tried to slide it to safety behind the crease. She fell for 49. 

Yastika Bhatia celebrates after scoring a fifty.
Yastika Bhatia celebrates after scoring a fifty. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

Yastika Bhatia celebrates after scoring a fifty. | Photo Credit: EMMANUAL YOGINI/The Hindu

Yastika looked at home in this format, taking calculated risks and scoring at a brisk rate. She was dropped on 15 when Bell squandered a sitter after getting both hands to it. Yastika went on to score an 88-ball 66, getting to her fifty after pulling Lauren Filer for six over backward square leg. Charlie Dean, who was denied that wicket, got a second chance off a similar delivery and Bell made no mistake this time with the resulting edge. 

Sneh Rana and Deepti Sharma took charge of the Indian innings in fading light. Sneh’s grating defensive prowess frustrated Ecclestone and gave Deepti the space to free her arms. Knight’s decision to take the new ball did not help as Deepti romped to her third Test fifty in three matches. Rana’s defiant 73-ball 30 ended after she was castled by Nat Sciver-Brunt in the dying minutes of the day. 

Besides the costly drop of Yastika, England was shoddy on the field throughout the day, allowing balls to race away to the boundary despite getting to position in time. The pitch initially aided seam movement but seemed to ease out after lunch against all expectations. That said, India’s tactical decision to bring in Shubha gave the side four left handers and the luxury of consistently fielding a left-right combination in the middle, which nullified anything Ecclestone could do with the early bounce on offer. 

Speaking to broadcasters at the end of day’s play, Jemimah made clear India’s intention to continue in the same vein when the innings resumes on day two. In 2014, the last home Test India played, the side batted just once, amassed a 400 score and did not need to pad up again. Harmanpreet and Co. won’t mind an encore. 

Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment