BAN v IND: Harmanpreet Kaur stars in her 300th international match

Harmanpreet Kaur produced a special knock, scoring 39 runs off 26 balls, on her 300th international appearance

Tanveer Singh Kapoor
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Harmanpreet Kaur

Captain Kaur was the star of the show in the 4th T20I © Getty

Harmanpreet Kaur produced a Player of the Match performance on her 300th international appearance as India grabbed their fourth consecutive victory in the five-match T20I series in Bangladesh at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium on Monday (May 6). The visitors thumped Bangladesh by 56 runs, gaining a 4-0 lead with the scope of a clean sweep. Asha Sobhana made her first appearance for the country at the age of 33, while Habiba Islam Pinky debuted for Bangladesh aged 14. 

Nigar Sultana Joty won the toss and sent the visitors out to bat first. India were off to a shaky start, with Shafali Verma departing the crease in the second over. Shorifa Khatun got Verma out as the Indian opener tried striking the ball over cover, but ended up mistiming her shot. The first three overs of India’s innings were dominated by the home side as they conceded just 14 runs. 

Dayalan Hemalatha helped accelerate the score for the away side, hitting two sixes and two fours before falling victim to Marufa Akter on 22 runs. Captain Harmanpreet, along with vice-captain Smriti Mandhana continued to put more runs on the board for India. Exactly a delivery before the end of the power play, the match was interrupted due to rain on the score of 48 for 2. 

Approximately 90 minutes later, the players came back to the ground as the game got reduced to 14 overs. Mandhana ended the power play with a boundary. The outfield slowed down further because of damp conditions, but Indian batters continued to fight to hit as many boundaries as possible. Mandhana came down the track to try to take the aerial route, but misjudged Rabeya Khan’s delivery and got clean bowled on 22 runs. 

Richa Ghosh joined the skipper and they both put together a partnership of 44 runs, with the former taking on the Bangladesh spinners. The Indian wicket-keeper hit three fours and a six, but lost her wicket to Khan while trying to hit the ball over long-off and giving an easy catching opportunity to Shorna Akter. After losing two more wickets in the final over, India ended their innings on 122 runs at the loss of six wickets. Kaur was the top-scorer with 39 runs. 

Bangladesh’s batting woes continued in this game as well. After scoring 14 runs in the first two overs, their batting unit slowed down yet again. There was a chance of dismissal in the third over when Dilara Akter skied her shot to mid wicket, but debutant Asha Sobhana dropped the catch. There was also a run-out chance in the same delivery, but Titas Sadhu failed to collect the throw at the non-striker’s end. 

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Murshida Khatun was the first batter to depart, courtesy of Deepti Sharma. The left-hander charged down the ground, but hit the outside edge and got caught behind. Rubya Haider and Akter struggled to take the score ahead as Indian bowlers continued to ruffle Bangladesh’s feathers. Sharma struck again, dismissing Akter this time on 21 runs. Haider followed her way as well in the same over. 

Sobhana was the next bowler to get the breakthrough for India. The 33-year-old debutant sent skipper Joty back to the dressing room. Radha Yadav continued her productive form with the ball as Ritu Moni fell victim to the left-arm spinner. Pooja Vastrakar also added a wicket to her tally when Rabeya attempted the pull shot and top-edged it to short mid wicket. The lack of runs ensured a comfortable 56-run victory for India. 

Brief Scores: India 122/6 in 14 overs (Harmanpreet Kaur 39, Richa Ghosh 24; Marufa Akter 2/24) beat Bangladesh 68/7 in 14 overs (Dilara Akter 21; Deepti Sharma 2/13, Asha Sobhana 2/18) by 56 runs (DLS Method). POTM: Harmanpreet Kaur