India beat England in the 3rd T20I to end the series with a consolation win

India Women finally beat England Women in the third and last T20I of the series as they chased 127 in 19 overs with five wickets in hand and one over to spare at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Sunday.

India beat England in the 3rd T20I to end the series with a consolation win. PC: Getty
India beat England in the 3rd T20I to end the series with a consolation win. PC: Getty

England won the toss and opted to bat first. They made four changes going into the match. In the absence of Danielle Wyatt and Natalie Sciver-Brunt, captain Heather Knight led from the front with the bat scoring a delectable 52 off 42. Knight was dropped on 1 by wicket-keeper Richa Ghosh of Amanjot Kaur’s bowling in the eighth over. The right-handed middle-order batter made India pay as she went to pile up an additional 51 runs helping England post a competitive score of 126 in 20 overs.

Renuka Singh Thakur again struck in the first over of the innings, which was twice in this series, as she clean-bowled Maia Bouchier for a golden duck. She also sent Sophia Dunkley (11) packing in the second over of her spell to put England on the back foot. However, Knight and wicket-keeper Amy Jones (25) came together to steady the ship. The partnership didn’t last long as the spin twins Shreyanka Patil (3/19) and Saika Ishaque (3/22) scalped six wickets between them and gave away just 41 runs in eight overs. Amanjot, who came in place of Pooja Vastrakar, had a decent outing with 2/25 in three overs, with both her wickets coming on the last and second last ball of the innings.

Chasing 127, India lost their opening batter Shafali Verma (6) in the third over. The left-arm speedster Freya Kemp followed the shuffling Shafali as the latter missed and the former hit. At 1/11, Mumbai bat Jemimah Rodrigues joined hands with Smriti Mandhana to stitch a strong partnership of 57 runs for the second wicket. Mandhana, who was the first from the Indian team to reach the ground on the match day for practice, top scored with a run a ball 48. Deepti Sharma (12) was promoted to number four, due to Harmanpreet Kaur not being 100% fit due to an ankle injury which she sustained in the 16th over while fielding at mid-off. Kaur was however forced to come in at number five when her team needed 33 off 27. Kaur remained unbeaten on 6 off 8 while her statemate Amanjot Kaur gave her good company scoring an undefeated 13 off 4, including three fours. Amanjot, who accounted for two wickets earlier in the day hit the winning run too. England missed the services of Natalie Sciver-Brunt, Lauren Bell, and Sarah Glenn (thumb injury) with the ball as the trio was rested. Freya Kemp (2/24) and Sophie Ecclestone (2/43) played their part but in the end the Indian batting proved too good for them. The number one T20I bowler Ecclestone also registered her worst bowling figures in terms of runs leaked in her T20I career.

Shreyanka Patil bagged the Player of the Match award for her excellent bowling display. India won the third T20I but England clinched the series 2-1.

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Despite India’s disappointing performance in the first two T20Is, the fans gathered in large numbers at the Wankhede Stadium to support the Women in Blue. The crowd was bigger than what was witnessed in the second T20I played on Saturday. Harmanpreet Kaur and co. fought hard and did not let down their loyal fanbase. Every wicket taken and every run scored by the Indian players were cheered, which was refreshing for women’s cricket in the country.

Winning Moment

The two teams will next play one-off Test from December 14 to 17 at Dr D Y Patil Sports Academy in Navi Mumbai and team India will again hope for a great crowd to come and support them.

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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