Sutherland, Healy help Australia clinch T20I series against India

Annabel Sutherland picked up two wickets in her four overs giving away only 12 runs

Shajin Mohanan S
New Update

Australia won T20I series 2-1 © Getty Images

Bowling effort led by Annabel Sutherland and twin fifties from openers Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney helped Australia clinch the T20I series 2-1 with a convincing seven wicket win over India at the D Y Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai on Tuesday (January 9). During the multi-format tour, Australia went down in the one-off Test against the hosts before clinching both the limited over legs. 

It was once again win the toss and opt to bowl mantra for the captains and playing in her 150th T20I - first Australian to do so, Alyssa Healy called it right before Australia took the field. India needed a stronger start than the one they had in the second T20I and it was provided by Shafali Verma and Smriti Mandhana. Shafali was the aggressor of the two and she hit five boundaries in the first four overs including three in the fourth over bowled by Kim Garth.

Just when it looked like the openers would build on that start, Megan Schutt struck with the wicket of Shafali in the fifth over for 26 off 17 balls. Mandhana didn't let that affect her and took on Ashleigh Gardner to hit for a six and four in the final over of the power play to take the score past fifty.

However, Sutherland's introduction into the attack derailed India's train as they lost three wickets in quick succession to reduce themselves to 66 for 4 at the end of the tenth over. Jemimah Rodrigues was the first to follow as she failed to negotiate a Sutherland bouncer and was caught at deep square-leg. Georgia Wareham removed Smriti Mandhana in the next over and Harmanpreet Kaur's run of low scores continued with Sutherland accounting for her before the drinks break.

From there, Richa Ghosh tried her to best to take India to a good score and she did mange to hit a couple of fours and three sixes to take India to 124 for 5 at the end of the 17th over. But once again the reintroduction of Sutherland put a break on the scoring rate and only two runs came from the 18th over. 

Amanjot Kaur hit a couple of fours and Pooja Vastrakar finished the innings with a six to take India to 147 for 6 at the end of the stipulated 20 overs.

Chasing 148 for a series win, Healy gave Australia a strong start as she didn't let the Indian pacers settle early on. By the time Shreyanka Patil was introduced into the attack, the Australian captain manged to find the boundaries on six occassions including a six off Renuka Singh Thakur. Australia were 54 for no loss at the end of the power play.

Post the power play, Healy survived a close call with the third umpire not finding enough evidence to rule her out even as an elated Jemimah Rodrigues picked up the ball with a sharp take at point. Healy then went on to score a fifty off just 34 balls to celebrate the occassion of her 150th T20I.

Eventually Deepti Sharma removed Healy with a successful DRS call just before the drinks break, but Australian openers added 85 runs by then. From there, it was upto Mooney and it looked like she would take the visitors to the target in the company of Tahlia McGrath.

Just as the game was meandering to a finish, Vastrakar came back to pick up McGrath and Ellyse Perry in successive deliveries and it came down to 30 off 24 balls needed for the Australians.

However, in-form Phoebe Litchfield didn't want the asking rate to escalate further and reduced it to 16 off 18 balls with a couple of fours off young Shreyanka. Mooney eventually gave the match finishing touches as she brought her half-century and Australia's win with back-to-back boundaries in the penultimate over. 

Brief Scores: India 147/6 in 20 overs (Richa Ghosh 34, Smriti Mandhana 29; Annabel Sutherland 2/12) lost to Australia 149/3 in 18.4 overs (Alyssa Healy 55, Beth Mooney 52; Pooja Vastrakar 2/26) by seven wickets POTM: Annabel Sutherland POTS: Alyssa Healy