Pooja Vastrakar and Sneh Rana revives India Inning with 122 Runs Partnership

On Sunday, India and Pakistan locked horns against each other in the fourth match of the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup. India won the toss and elected to bat first.

 

Pooja Vastrakar and Sneh Rana revives India Inning with 122 Runs Partnership. PC: ICC/Getty Images
Pooja Vastrakar and Sneh Rana revives India Inning with 122 Runs Partnership. PC: ICC/Getty Images

 

India did not get off to the best of starts as they lost their swashbuckling opening batter, Shafali Verma, for a duck in the third over. Deepti Sharma walked in to bat at number three and together with Smriti Mandhana, stitched a 92-run partnership for the second wicket. The two southpaws played some good looking shots during their partnership. While Madhana crafted her way to her 21st ODI half-century scoring 52 off 75 balls, Sharma, on the other hand, muscled 40 runs off 57 balls.

Mandhana also went past 2500 ODI runs to become just the fourth Indian batter to do so in women’s ODI cricket. After their 92-run partnership, the duo fell in quick succession as the twin left arm spinners in Anam Amin and Nashra Sandhu sent them packing. From 98-3, India were suddenly struggling at 114-6 as they lost three wickets for just 16 runs. Captain Mithali Raj, vice captain Harmanpreet Kaur and wicket-keeper Richa Ghosh could only manage single digit scores. With all the star Indian batters back in the pavilion, the momentum shifted towards Pakistan. However, all-rounders Pooja Vastrakar and Sneh Rana had some other plans.

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The duo played some smart cricket, ran hard between the wickets and punished the loose balls. Vastrakar (67 runs off 59 balls) and Rana (53 not out off 48 balls) put together 122 runs for the seventh wicket, recording the highest seventh wicket partnership in ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup. At the end of 50 overs, India posted a respectable score of 244-7.

For Pakistan, the two spinners, Nida Dar and Nashra Sandhu were the joint leading wicket-takers as they scalped two wickets apiece. While Dar got rid of Kaur and Ghosh, Sandhu spun the web to entangle Raj and Sharma. The other three Pakistani bowlers, Diana Baig, Anam Amin and Fatima Sana, used by captain Bishmah Maroof struck with one scalp each. Baig and Amin opened the bowling for Pakistan and did bowled well in the powerplay as they conceded just 33 runs and picked up one wicket of Verma in the first 10 overs.

India have set a target of 245 for Pakistan. If Pakistan chase down the total, this will be their highest successful run chase, surpassing their 181-7 against South Africa in 2011.

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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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