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Rediff.com  » Cricket » Consolation win for Harmanpreet and Co; Eng pocket series 2-1

Consolation win for Harmanpreet and Co; Eng pocket series 2-1

Source: PTI
Last updated on: December 10, 2023 23:41 IST
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Smriti Mandhana's run-a-ball 48 was inclusive of five fours and two sixes

IMAGE: Smriti Mandhana's run-a-ball 48 was inclusive of five fours and two sixes. Photograph: ICC/X

Spinners Saika Ishaque and Shreyanka Patil bowled brilliantly before another youngster Amanjot Kaur displayed composure to earn India a respectable five-wicket consolation victory over England in the third and final WT20I in Mumbai on Sunday.

England, however pocketed the big prize, winning the series 2-1.

 

Chasing a target of 127, which got trickier, Smriti Mandhana anchored the Indian chase with a scratchy run-a-ball 48 but it was Amanjot's boundaries, including a streaky winning reverse sweep under pressure that got hosts past target with an over to spare.

India's victory was their first in the last five matches, having last beaten England at by eight wickets, at Derby in September 2022, To be fair, England played a second string team, resting four of their star performers.

It was also India's first win at home against England since March 2018, after five straight defeats in the shortest format.

Overall, it is only the eighth time that India have beaten England in 31 T20Is.

Mandhana cracked five fours and two sixes while the next best effort came from Jemimah Rodrigues, who chipped in with a vital 29 at No 3.

India lost Shafali Verma (6) in the third over but Mandhana and Rodrigues joined forces to take the team ahead.

However Rodrigues swept Sophie Ecclestone twice for fours to not allow the England spinner to find her rhythm, taking 10 runs off her first over in the game.

Mandhana also clobbered the left-arm Ecclestone over deep midwicket for the first six of the innings.

India's Shreyanka Patil finished with fabulous figures of 3 for 19 as he helped restrict England to 126 

IMAGE: India's Shreyanka Patil finished with fabulous figures of 3 for 19 as he helped restrict England to 126. Photograph: BCCI

But the partnership ended when Rodrigues missed another sweep shot, off Charlie Dean, to be adjudged leg-before after a 33-ball 29 that had four boundaries in it.

Rodrigues and Mandhana added 57 runs for the second wicket from 55 balls.

With India captain Harmanpreet Kaur twisting her foot during the first half of the game which forced her to leave the field in the 16th over, Deepti Sharma was promoted ahead of her at No 4.

Deepti hit two fours in her 11-ball 12 before being caught behind off Freya Kemp in the 16th over, which brought Harmanpreet (6 not out) at the crease.

With 11 needed off the last two overs, Richa Ghosh (2) missed connecting on a scoop shot which only added to the pressure but Amanjot smacked two fours through cover and hit the winning runs off Ecclestone (2/40) with a boundary too.

Earlier in the game, India's rookie spinners Saika and Shreyanka made their first real impression in top flight cricket with three wickets apiece but England skipper Knight's 52 took the visitors to 126 all out.

Saika (4-0-22-3) looked in her elements while Patil produced a fabulous 4-0-19-3, as England lost three wickets during powerplay and were reduced to 76/8 in the 15th over.

But Knight joined forces with No 10 Charlie Dean (16) to put on crucial 50 runs for the ninth wicket to give England bowlers something to defend.

Knight soaked the pressure well and hung around to unleash a late charge which had her finishing at 52 off 42 balls with three sixes and as many fours.

England's decision to bat first seemed to have backfired completely as the two Indian spinners reduced England to 76 for 8 at one stage before Knight ensured that her team's total had a respectable look to it.

Brief scores: England: 126 all out in 20 overs (Heather Knight 52; Shreyanka Patil 3 for 19, Saika Ishaque 3 for 22) vs India women 130/5 in 19 overs (Smriti Mandhana 48, Jemimah Rodrigues 29, Amanjot Kaur 13 not out).

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