Smriti Mandhana scores 343 Runs in 3 ODIs, India thrash South Africa winning 3-0

Arundhati Reddy and Deepti Sharma shine with the ball before Smriti Mandhana continues her dream series with the bat as India complete a thumping whitewash.

Smriti Mandhana scores 343 Runs in 3 ODIs, India thrash South Africa winning 3-0
Smriti Mandhana scores 343 Runs in 3 ODIs, India thrash South Africa winning 3-0

Women in Blue overcame a spirited effort from the South African batting unit to seal the 2nd ODI and the series by four runs. The 2nd ODI witnessed as many as a record four centurions (Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur, Laura Wolvaardt, and Marizanne Kapp). It was the first instance when four batters surpassed the three figure mark. Skipper Harmanpreet Kaur was awarded the Player of the Match for her match-winning innings (103* off 88 balls) with the bat.

The South African skipper Laura Wolvaardt won the toss and opted to bat first. The South African openers Tazmin Brits and skipper Laura Wolvaardt got off to a solid start with a 102-run opening stand, scoring over five runs an over. Arundhati Reddy provided the first breakthrough for India as she picked up the wicket of the opposition skipper Laura Wolvaardt. She completed her well deserved half-century before getting dismissed. Tazmin Brits soon followed her back to the pavilion to provide the 2nd breakthrough for India.

The visitors. South Africa lost a couple more wickets in quick succession and found themselves in trouble at 120/4 in the 27th over of the innings. Nadine de Klerk joined Sune Luus at the crease and the duo stitched a 23-run 5th wicket partnership. Pooja Vastrakar cleaned up Sune Luus to provide the 5th breakthrough for her side. Nondumiso Shangase joined Nadine de Klerk at the crease and the duo stitched another crucial 31-run partnership for the 6th wicket.

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Nondumiso Shangase was found short of her crease to provide the 6th breakthrough for India. South Africa eventually ended up with a total of 215/8 in their quota of overs. Skipper Laura Wolvaardt (61 off 57 balls), Tazmin Brits (38 off 66 balls), wicket-keeper batter Mieke de Ridder (26 off 31 balls), and Nadine de Klerk (26 off 46 balls) were the top performers with the bat for South Africa. Deepti Sharma (10-0-27-2), Arundhati Reddy (10-0-36-2), Shreyanka Patil (10-0-35-1), and Pooja Vastrakar (9-0-54-1) were the top performers with the ball for India.

Chasing a target of 216, the Indian openers Shafali Verma and Smriti Mandhana got off to a solid start with a 61-run opening stand, scoring over five runs an over. Tumi Sekhukhune picked up the wicket of Shafali Verma to provide the first breakthrough for South Africa. Priya Punia joined Smriti Mandhana at the crease and the duo stitched another crucial 62-run partnership for the 2nd wicket. Ayabonga Khakha picked up the wicket of Priya Punia to provide the 2nd breakthrough for her side.

Skipper Harmanpreet Kaur joined Smriti Mandhana at the crease and the duo stitched a 48-run partnership for the 3rd wicket. Nonkululeko Mlaba picked up the big wicket of Smriti Mandhana to provide the much-needed breakthrough for South Africa. The Indian vice-captain fell just 10 runs short of her yet another well-deserved century of the series. Jemimah Rodrigues joined skipper Harmanpreet Kaur at the crease and the duo took their side agonisingly closer to another comprehensive victory.

The Indian skipper Harmanpreet Kaur was found short of her crease to provide the 4th breakthrough for South Africa. India eventually got over the line with six wickets in hand and 56 balls to spare. Smriti Mandhana (90 off 83 balls), skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (42 off 48 balls), Priya Punia (28 off 40 balls), and Shafali Verma (25 off 39 balls) were the top performers with the bat for India. Nonkululeko Mlaba (10-1-55-1), Ayabonga Khakha (9-0-38-1), and Tumi Sekhukhune (8.4-0-43-1) were the top performers with the ball for South Africa.

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Deepti Sharma was awarded the Player of the Match for her brilliant spell (10-0-27-2) with the ball. Smriti Mandhana was awarded the Player of the Series for her mind-blowing performances throughout the series. She was the leading run-scorer of the series with 343 runs with a strike rate of 103.93, and an exceptional average of 114.33 in three innings. Her tally of runs included a couple of centuries and a half-century. Apart from her exploits with the bat, she also picked up her maiden International wicket with the ball in the 2nd ODI when she picked up the wicket of Sune Luus.

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