Australia 156/4 Mooney 45, Villani 39 Goswami 3-30
India women 152/5 Mandhana 67, Patil 35 Gardner 2-22, Perry 2-31
by six wickets
Australia carried over their dominant performance from the ODIs into the T20 tri series as they inflicted a six wicket defeat on India. They cantered to a sub-par target of 153 in 18.1 overs on a road of a pitch at the Brabourne stadium, Mumbai. In the process, they also equaled their highest T20I run chase. Vital contributions by Beth Mooney (45 from 32 balls), Elyse Villani (39 from 33) and Meg Lanning (35 from 25 balls) ensured Australia didn’t face many flutters in their chase. Jhulan Goswami, making a comeback since the SA series, was in fine form sharing 3 wickets.
In her very first over, she snuck through Alyssa Healy’s (4 from 2 balls) defence with an incoming delivery. In her second over, a similar delivery cleaned up Ashleigh Gardner (15 from 8 balls). Mooney became her third victim when she tried to loft a fuller delivery towards mid-on. In the 14th over, Villani chipped a return catch straight back to Poonam Yadav and India must have felt they were back in the game with Australia 116/4. But Lanning and Rachael Haynes ensured Australia didn’t stutter further and stitched a 44 run partnership to carry Australia to victory.
That India reached 152 was in no small part to T2O specialist Anuja Patil. Her pyrotechnics when India were floundering at 112/4 after 17 overs ensured that India posted a decent score. She pulled and scooped to great effect plundering 35 runs from 21 deliveries. Even then, India would probably rue the score they got after posting a blistering start. Put in to bat by Australia, India got off to a rollicking start. While Mithali Raj was sedate, her opening partner Smriti Mandhana batted in a higher gear. She collected boundaries effortlessly hitting a staggering 11 fours and 2 sixes.
By the end of over 9, India were 72/0 and looked well set to post a huge total. Gardner however struck in the next over. When she saw Raj stepping down the track, she fired the ball wide down the offside and Healy collected the ball to complete the stumping. Raj departed for 18 from 27 balls. Mandhana (67 from 41 balls) was the next to fall when she hit one shot too many and mistimed to mid-on. Thereafter, the Indian batsmen were guilty of frittering away the good start by playing loose shots, pull shot being the chief culprit.
Read: Here's what Smriti Mandhana said after the loss?
Jemimah Rodrigues (1 from 3 balls) got a top edge to fine-leg while pulling, thus handing Ellyse Perry her first wicket. A ball later, captain Harmanpreet Kaur departed for 13 from 16 balls unable to keep down a short ball. After Mandhana’s departure at 99, India were able to add only 13 runs in 3.3 overs until Patil let loose. Perry’s final over went for 14 runs during Patil’s onslaught. During the 19th over, Patil deceived by a slower ball, slogged out to deep midwicket where Sophie Molineux took her third catch in her debut
match. Veda Krishnamurthy (15 from 10 balls) at the other end hit a six and boundary in the last over and took India to 152 which in the end proved to be an underwhelming total.
India to play their 2nd T20 match against England on Sunday i.e 25th March, 2018.