ICC WWC 2017, England Women v India Women, Review: Indian eves stun the hosts in the opener

ICC WWC 2017, England Women v India Women, Review: Indian eves stun the hosts in the opener

India Women beat England Women by 35 runs.

Mithali Raj of India
DERBY, ENGLAND – JUNE 24: Mithali Raj of India bats during the England v India group stage match at the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 at The 3aaa County Ground on June 24, 2017 in Derby, England. (Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images)

The stage was all set for the two heavyweights of Women’s cricket world to lock horns. The hosts, England Women, took on the in-form India Women in their first game of the ICC Womens World Cup 2017. Going into the game, both teams had contrasting fortunes. The Indian side had been herculean in their efforts with 16 consecutive wins to their name.

They had emerged victorious in the Qualifiers for the tournament proper. On the other hand, the English side had not played much in their last six months. Amidst this backdrop, the two sides came into the contest. Heather Knight won the toss for England and opted to bowl first.

In walked Indian openers Punam Raut and Smriti Mandhana to open the innings. Raut, the in-form player, was expected to play the senior role with Mandhana coming back to the side after an injury layoff. The openers gave India Women a solid start in the game. Mandhana, in particular, took the liking to the new ball bowlers as the scorecard raced to 59 in the first 10 overs.

Soon, the ladies went on to register a century stand as well. En route the stand, Mandhana was the dominant partner and scored her fifty. While Mandhana’s knock was belligerent, Raut played a more sensible and anchor knock. Mandhana was the first player to be dismissed on the day in the 27th over. Skipper Heather Knight broke the 144 run opening stand by sending Mandhana on 90 that came off 72 balls with 11 fours and 2 sixes.

In walked the star of the Indian batting lineup – skipper Mithali Raj. Mithali took her time to settle in and soon got into the groove, Meanwhile, Punam also reached her fifty and looked good for more. The two batswomen showed great class to steer the team over the 200-run mark. Just when Raut started to cut loose, Danielle Hazell struck and sent her packing on 86 that had come off 134 deliveries with 7 fours and a six.

The hard hitting player Harmanpreet Kaur came in at number 4 with just under 8 overs to go. She hit a four and six during her unbeaten stay at the crease. But the limelight was hogged by Mithali Raj, who scored her 7th consecutive ODI fifty. She was dismissed on the final delivery off the innings on 71 that came off 73 balls with 8 fours. Kaur remained unbeaten on 24 off 22 balls as India Women finished with a decent 281/3 in their 50 overs.

And the run chase

In the run chase, the English openers Tammy Beaumont and Sarah Taylor got off to a decent start but failed to get the odd boundaries needed every over. Some tight bowling from Jhulan Goswami and Ekta Bisht with the new ball created pressure on the English bats. Beaumont was the first to be dismissed in the 9th over on 14 by Shikha Pandey – the first change bowler.

In her very next over, Pandey dismissed Taylor on 22 (31). Skipper Heather Knight and Natalie Sciver than joined hands at the crease to show some brief resistance. However, Deepti Sharma’s magic with the ball worked as she dismissed Sciver on 18. Fran Wilson came in to bat at number 5. Wilson and Knight looked in good touch and suddenly England seemed to be crawling back in the game from being on 67/3.

The two women added 67 for the fourth wicket before Harmanpreet’s fielding effort saw Knight being run out on 46 (69). Danielle Wyatt (9) could not do much as Deepti bagged her second wicket by catching her off her own bowling. Meanwhile, Wilson had stepped on the accelerator from the other end. She raced past her fifty and looked good for more. Katherine Brunt (24) gave here brief support but was run out by Deepti soon after.

The horror running did not end just there as Wilson was also run out, this time by Ekta Bisht, on 81 that came off 75 balls with 6 fours. Another run out beckoned as Mona Meshram managed to see the back of Jenny Gunn on 9. At 229/8, the match looked pretty much seized for India Women who were spectacular on the field with 4 run outs. The remaining two wickets fell soon after and India Women beat England Women by 35 runs. Deepti was the pick of the bowlers with 3/47 to her name as England were bowled out for 246 in 47.3 overs.

Brief Scores:

India Women 281/3 in 50 overs (Mandhana 90, Raut 86, Knight 2/41, Hazell 1/51)

England Women 246/10 in 47.3 overs (Wilson 81, Knight 46, Deepti 3/47, Pandey 2/35)