Smriti Mandhana laid a solid foundation for a competitive total. Following her aggressive brand of cricket, she smacked five fours and a six to score a 23-ball 34. The scorecard read 43 in 6 overs when she walked back to the pavilion. In came the in-form Jemimah Rodrigues and continued the momentum, but Heather Knight timely removed Taniya Bhatia and put a lid on the runs. England Women were mindful of India Women’s batting prowess. There was no margin for error.
Harmanpreet Kaur joined Rodrigues. In the semi-final of the 2018 Women’s World Cup against Australia, it was Harmanpreet’s 171 that stormed India into the final. It, however, was not the case today. England throttled Harmanpreet by bowling right lengths, never letting her score boundaries at will.
With 17 balls to spare and 8 wickets in hand, Rodrigues had to up the ante, and in the process of doing so, she ran herself out. What followed was a terrible sight for the Indian fans. From 89 for 2, India were shot down to 112 all out. Sophie Ecclestone, Kirstie Gordon, and Knight took 7 wickets between them.
The Indian bowlers had very few runs to defend. Harmanpreet employed her best mode of attack to make early inroads – spin. Deepti Sharma and Radha Yadav responded well to the tactic and sent the openers within the powerplay. However, that was the last time India heaved a sigh. Amy Jones and Natalie Sciver scored fifties and chased down the target in 17.1 overs.
Jones was adjudged Player of Match for her all-round performance.
England will now meet Australia in the final of the 2018 Women’s WT20.
India Women112 all out in 19.3 overs (Smriti Mandhana 34, Jemimah Rodrigues 26; Heather Knight 3 for 9) lose to England Women116 for 2 in 17.1 overs (Amy Jones 53*, Natalie Sciver; Radha Yadav (1 for 20) by 8 wickets.