'Keep believing!'- Sir Vivian Richards to the Women in Blue after a chastening defeat in the final

‘Keep believing!’- Sir Vivian Richards to the Women in Blue after a chastening defeat in the final

The Women in Blue were eventually bowled out for 99 in the 20th over to hand the Australians their fifth T20 World Cup title.

Vivian Richards and India Women
Vivian Richards and India Women. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

It was billed as a ‘clash of titans’ but, as is almost always the case, it turned to be yet another anti-climax as the defending champions flexed their muscles to the hilt in front of a boisterous 85,000-plus crowd at the Melbourne Cricket Ground to claim their fifth T20 World Cup title at the expense of the Women in Blue.

India’s dream of scripting their very own 1983 moment was broken by the Meg Lanning-led Aussies, courtesy an all-round display with the bat, ball and in the field. The Women in Blue had beaten the Aussies early-on in the tournament after Poonam Yadav spun a web around the hosts.

But, Australia looked like a different kettle of fish on the big day and the tone was set by a bludgeoning 115-run-stand between Alyssa Healy and Beth Money. That opening stands virtually put India out of the game despite them taking a flurry of wickets in the end.

Sir Vivian Richards gives a heartfelt suggestion to the Women in Blue

The target of 185 was always going to be a stiff task and by the time the powerplay was done, India’s chances of overhauling it took a sharp turn towards south as they lost the cream of their batting-unit- Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues and skipper Harmanpreet Kaur- for a grand total of 30 runs.

The Women in Blue were eventually bowled out for 99 in the 20th over to hand the Australians their fifth T20 World Cup title. This is India’s second defeat in the final of an ICC event in the past three years and with their dreams getting shattered once again, the Women in Blue’s emotional side was truly visible on their faces.

Given the heartbreak, wishes continue to pour in for Team India on social media. The latest to join the bandwagon is someone who knows a thing or two about winning and losing titles- Sir Vivian Richards.

The former West Indian legend, who celebrated his 68th birthday on Saturday, took to Twitter to congratulate the girls on their campaign while at the same time, urging them to keep believing in themselves.

“Never be let down. You have been amazing throughout and you’ll shall have the trophy at your hand one day. Keep believing! @BCCIWomen” Sir Viv Richards tweeted.