England pip India by four wickets to clinch the T20I series 2-0

In a low scoring encounter, England Women beat India Women by four wickets in the second T20I that was played at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday. With this win, England have taken an unassailable lead of 2-0 in this three-match T20I series and have never dropped a bilateral tournament against India since 2006 in the same format.

England pip India by four wickets to clinch the T20I series 2-0. PC: Getty
England pip India by four wickets to clinch the T20I series 2-0. PC: Getty

Winning the toss and electing to bowl, England invited India to bat first. Indian batting collapsed like a pack of cards as it managed to post 80 in 16.2 overs. 80 was the lowest T20I score by India Women against England Women and third lowest overall in T20Is. Jemimah Rodrigues was the lone warrior in the battle as she piled up 30 off 33 balls. Besides Rodrigues, opening batter Smriti Mandhana (10) was only the other batter to score in double digits. England’s plan to open the bowling with Charlie Dean worked wonders as the off-spinner sent India’s opening pair of Shafali Verma (0) and Mandhana to the dugout cheaply. The hosts put up a disappointing show with the bat on an otherwise batting-friendly wicket. Lauren Bell, Sophie Ecclestone, and Sarah Glenn were the other English bowlers to snap two scalps apiece.

In reply, England started the run chase with a couple of hiccups as they lost their openers Danielle Wyatt (0) and Sophia Dunkley (9) inside the first three overs, courtesy of Renuka Singh Thakur’s brilliant new ball bowling. However, Nat Sciver-Brunt (16), the player of the match in the first T20I combined forces with Alice Capsey (25) to settle the nerves and bail the team out of the crunch situation. The 11th over of the innings, when Deepti Sharma struck two in two, garnered a lot of excitement among the fans who had gathered in large numbers to witness the match. However, it just delayed the inevitable as Ecclestone finished the match in style with a four of Shreyanka Patil’s bowling. The visitors overhauled the target in 11.2 overs and won the match by four wickets with 52 balls to spare.

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Though India lost the match, the atmosphere at Wankhede Stadium was electric. Midway through the first innings the ground staff had to open additional gates of the stadium to let the enthusiastic cricket lovers in. The fans would have certainly loved to see the Women in Blue winning, however they would take some fond memories, including Rodrigues’ brave innings, Amanjot Kaur’s unbelievable catch to dismiss Capsey, Deepti’s double strike, and Renuka’s new ball bowling.

Charlie Dean won the Player of the Match award for her outstanding bowling performance, especially with the new ball. After missing out on the first T20I, she came back strong in the second game to claim 2/16 in four overs.

The series may not have gone in India’s favour but the team will hope their fans return to the stadium in even bigger numbers on Sunday as they take on England for the third and last T20I of the series.

I am a former cricketer having represented Mumbai University at All India University level. I was a part of MCA probables for the U-19 and U-23 age group. I have been an avid cricket writer for the last five years. Currently I am pursuing my Ph.D from IIT Bombay.

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