The clash between the tournament’s most consistent teams at the Women’s World T20 proved predictably entertaining, but ended with a result that few predicted. In front of a crowd of almost 5,000, India recorded a memorable win over tournament favourites Australia.
India topped Group B with eight points while Australia finished second with six points. New Zealand (four), Pakistan (two) and Ireland (zero) finished in that order.
Mandhana’s first T20I fifty in 14 innings could not have come at a better time. It helped India to a 48-run win, their first over Australia in Women’s World T20s.
The left-hander had a scratchy tournament, but put that behind her in a chanceless and sparkling knock, one that helped India to their highest ever total against Australia. In the process, she also brought up her 1000th T20I run.
Vice-captain Mandhana combined with captain Harmanpreet Kaur, and the two senior batters set the pace, scoring 68 off just 42 balls together, with Harmanpreet scoring 43 of those.
The pair hit five fours and three sixes while at the crease, and despite no other batter getting into double figures, the eventual total of 167 for eight proved enough.
Australia had a less than explosive start, and were restricted to 39 for two in the Powerplay, after which wickets fell regularly.
Only Ellyse Perry, who also took three wickets, was able to convert her start into a substantial score. But she was left stranded on 39 not out, as the lower order collapsed around her.
The Indian spinners shared all nine wickets, four of those caught by Veda Krishnamurthy in the deep.
Scores in brief:
India 167-8, 20 overs (Smriti Mandhana 83, Harmanpreet Kaur 43; Ellyse Perry 3-16, Ashleigh Gardener 2-25, Delissa Kimmince 2-42)|
Australia: 119-9, 19.4 overs (Ellyse Perry 39 not out, Ashleigh Gardener 20; Anuja Patil 3-15, Radha Yadav 2-13, Deepti Sharma 2-24, Poonam Yadav 2-28)
New Zealand Women seal consolation win against Ireland
Twin sisters Isobel and Cecelia Joyce joined Clare Shillington and Ciara Metcalfe in retirement at the end of Ireland’s game against New Zealand in Women’e World T20.
On the field, it was Gaby Lewis who impressed before Sophie Devine ended New Zealand’s tournament with some fireworks.
Chasing Ireland’s 79 for nine, Sophie Devine (51) hit the joint fastest-fifty in the tournament and second fastest ever, matching the 21-ball mark that
Australia’s Alyssa Healy set earlier this week. The three sixes she hit took the tournament’s tally past 57, setting a record for the most sixes across editions of the Women’s World T20, with five matches still to be played.
Earlier, Lewis hit five fours as she scored a brisk 39, equaling the highest score for Ireland in the Women’s World T20s. She was the only Ireland batter to make an impression though, as off-spinner Leigh Kasperek took three wickets.
Scores in brief:
Ireland: 79-9, 20 overs (Gaby Lewis 39; Leigh Kasperek 3-19, Lea Tahuhu 2-17, Amelia Kerr 2-18)
New Zealand: 81-2, 7.3 overs (Sophie Devine 51)
Both sides also wore the Black Lives Matter logo on their collars.
Persistent rain meant only 17 overs were completed before an early tea break.
Both teams took a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement before play got under way.
Two minutes’ silence were also observed.
England and West Indies players took the knee ahead of the First Test in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
England displayed names of key workers, including nurse practitioner Tom Field, on their training shirts to honour their work in the Covid-19 crisis.
Test cricket is back, baby! Follow the first Test between England West Indies live here.
The toss for the first Test has been pushed back.
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Persistent drizzle in Southampton has put back the return of international cricket.