Smriti Mandhana and captain Harmanpreet Kaur scored fine unbeaten half-centuries as India defeated the West Indies by 56 runs to keep their slate clean in the women’s T20I Tri-Series, in East London (South Africa) on Monday.
After winning the toss and electing to bat, India got off to a good start and posted 167 for 2 in the 20 overs.
They then restricted their opponents to 111 for 4 to register their second consecutive victory of the series.
Openers Yastika Bhatia and Mandhana put together a 33-run partnership before the former was dismissed by off-spinner Karishma Ramharack for 18 with just one delivery remaining in power-play.
Ramharack tossed the ball up outside off and Yastika attempted a drive over covers but ended up playing away from her body. A faint outside edge saw the opener give an easy catch to wicketkeeper Rashada Williams.
Her dismissal brought in Harleen Deol but her stay at the crease did not last long, as she was trapped in front while trying to flick the ball on the off-side from pacer Shanika Bruce.
The early response to the length ball saw the young middle-order batter miss the stroke and the ball hitting her on the front pad.
At 52 for 2, there were some tense moments but once Mandhana and Harmanpreet paired up boundaries flowed freely.
Harmanpreet, who was back leading the side after missing the opening match of the tri-series reportedly due to illness, was on song as she smashed a 35-ball 51, studded with eight boundaries.
Mandhana, after failing with the bat in the opening game against South Africa, was equally belligerent scoring 74 off just 51 deliveries as the duo batted together for nearly 12 overs during their unbroken 115-run partnership to guide India to a competitive score.
Mandhana, who was dismissed for seven runs in the tri-series opener against South Africa, hit 10 boundaries and a six, even as the opponents utilised seven bowlers to break the partnership.
A target of 167 was always going to be a difficult chase and India’s spinners. led by Radha Yadav, throttled the runs, giving away precious little by way of loose deliveries.
The 22-year-old Radha gave away just 10 runs in her four overs while also taking the wicket of Shemaine Campbelle (47), who consumed 57 deliveries.
By the time Campbelle was dismissed attempting a pull off a full toss but holing out to Amanjot Kaur at deep mid-wicket, the match was as good as lost for West Indies as they were 96 for four with just 15 deliveries remaining.
Skipper Hayley Matthews and Afy Fletcher too couldn’t get the runs flowing and in the end a target of 167 proved too big to chase.
India: 167 for 2 in 20 overs (Smriti Mandhana 74 not out, Harmanpreet Kaur 56 not out) beat West Indies 111 for 4 in 20 overs (Shemaine Campbelle 47, Hayley Matthews 34 n.o.; Deepti Sharma 2/24, Radha Yadav 1/10) by 56 runs.
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Mandhana, Harmanpreet steer India to easy win over Windies – Rediff.com