Women's T20 World Cup 2023: India through to semi-final with win over Ireland in rain-marred game
Smriti Mandhana was awarded Player of the Match award for her knock of 87 runs.
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India and Ireland locked horns in the ongoing ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023 at St George's Park, Gqeberha in the Match 18 of the Women’s T20 World Cup 2023. Indian captain Harmanpreet Kaur won the toss and elected to bat as openers Smriti Mandhana and Shafali Verma gave a blazing start to the team.
Mandhana looked in fine touch right from the word go as she scored freely all around the ground, however, Shafali struggled to put the ball in the gaps. The duo added 62 runs for the first wicket in 57 balls before their partnership was broken by the Irish captain Laura Delany, who dismissed Shafali for 24 off 29. However, Mandhana continued her brilliant innings and got involved in a 52-run partnership with Harmanpreet Kaur.
Ireland's captain once again got into the act and ended the partnership by dismissing Kaur for 13 off 20 balls. She further got rid of the in-form Richa Ghosh on the very next ball to bring her side back into the game. However, Mandhana was unfazed by anything at the other end and continued her marvellous innings.
The left-handed batter put on an exhibition of her wide array of shots to score 87 off 56 balls, smashing nine fours and three sixes to help India post 155/6 in their allotted quota of 20 overs.
Gaby Lewis, Laura Delany bring Ireland back before rain
In reply, Ireland got off to the worst possible start as they lost their opener Amy Hunter on the first ball due to a miscommunication which resulted in her run out. Furthermore, Renuka Singh made matters worse as she destroyed the stumps of Orla Prendergast, sending her back to the pavilion for a duck.
Seeing their side in trouble, Gaby Lewis and Laura Delany got together and added 53 runs for the third wicket at a decent run-rate to keep the scoreboard moving. But just when everything was looking settled for Ireland, the rain arrived to spoil their party as Ireland were five runs behind the DLS par score at that time. The rain was relentless and showed no signs of stopping as India qualified for the semi-finals, eventually winning the match by five runs (DLS method).