Life has become tougher for India, who have to beat Australia tomorrow (Saturday, Feb 8) in order to stay in the race for the final. The quandary they are in is whether to give chance to players on the bench or stick to a combination that can win them the match. It's all to play for then. Hope to have you with us then. See ya!
Yet again India's bowlers brought the game closer than what would have been, if not for them. The pacers as well as spinners did make life tough for English batters with their change of pace and variations. However, despite Rajeshwari Gayakwad's three-fer, England managed to sneak in a win.
I think it was very competitive from @BCCIWomen bowlers given the fact that the total was small, if Indian batswomen perform better, the bowlers have it in them to steal the game away. Time for @ImHarmanpreet army to come back strong.— Reema Malhotra (@ReemaMalhotra8) February 7, 2020
Natalie Sciver was the architect of the win for England. She helped them get closer to the target, killing the game by hitting a half century in the process. She was a tad lucky after a caught behind appeal was negated by the umpire. But she adjusted well to the slow nature of the wicket and maneuvered the ball to get into the groove ahead of the T20 World Cup.
Heather Knight: "Not great cricket but really nice to get over the line. The pitch wasn’t good but we did well. Anya coming back from a dodgy toe and doing well is wonderful. Pace off the ball was effective for us. Seamers who were hitting the hard lengths or taking the pace off were effective. Really nice to see Sciver come back to form ahead of a big tournament."
Harmanpreet Kaur: "I guess we were 20 runs short. We have to focus on areas where we were not able to get our best. Our spinners are doing well but for them to do better we need to set a total on the board. We need to bat well otherwise it will be difficult for us. Tomorrow will be do or die for us. We’ll try to give our best."
For her 3/31, Anya Shrubsole was awarded the player of the match. Here's what she had to say: "Pleased to be back out there. It was a team performance and happy to contribute. Wasn’t one of the prettiest games but sometimes it’s about getting over the line. Sciver’s stand with Wilson did it for us. Yes, it’s a bit cold here after the heat in Canberra. It stopped a touch on the surface and pace off the ball worked."
England 124/6 in 18.5 overs, won by four wickets.
Tammy Beaumont was run out but Lauren Winfield came in and hit the winning runs off Radha Yadav. Fran Wilson stayed unbeaten on 22.
England 118/5 in 18 overs, need 6 in 12 balls.
Natalie Sciver got to her fifth T20I fifty in fine fashion, depositing Rajeshwari Gayakwad over deep mid-wicket for a maximum. She did well to carry England's batting after yet another top-order failure. She was also a tad lucky after she wasn't given caught behind when she actually had managed to get a bat to the keeper.
But on the very next ball after the six, Gayakwad extracted revenge by getting her out caught and bowled. Tammy Beaumont and Fran Wilson are in the middle now...
England 101/4 in 16 overs, need 23 in 24.
Natalie Sciver is continuing to motor along nicely, batting on 39 off 32. She has added 36 with Fran Wilson already. Can we have a surprise in the end?
England 65/4 in 11.1 overs, need 59 in 53.
Rajeshwari Gayakwad picks another wicket, the key one of Heather Knight. She tosses one outside off, Knight ends up slicing it towards backward point. Radha Yadav dives forward and takes it safely. This is a big wicket given Knight's run of form in the series. She goes for 18.
England 60/3 in 10 overs, need 64 more.
Natalie Sciver and, yet again, Heather Knight have been at the fore of England's recovery. Knight got a life when the umpire ruled an LBW appeal in favour of her, though replays later showed that it was plumb. The partnership is currently 32 runs inside just 5 overs.
Who will get the breakthrough for India?
England 28/3 in 5.2 overs, need 96 in 88.
Natalie Sciver hit one right back towards the right of Deepti Sharma the bowler, who gets there to stop it. But the ball ricochets off her hands to the stumps at the non-striker's end. Katherine Brunt was out of the crease and has to walk back. She looks livid and England's move to send in a pinch-hitter hasn't really worked.
England 23/2 in 4.2 overs, need 101 in 94 balls.
Radha Yadav strikes on her second balls. Bowls it flatter and a tad shorter outside off, Danielle Wyatt goes back and cuts. Does so aerially straight to Rajeshwari Gayakwad at backward point to depart for 14.
It was a lovely little phase for England, who were able to get a boundary an over, without really taking much risk.
England 2/1 in 1 over.
Amy Jones' struggle with the bat in this series is an open secret. But here she was undone by a fielding brilliance by Arundhati Reddy. Jones tried to hit a Rajeshwari Reddy ball to the off side but ended up getting it off the inner half towards mid-wicket. Reddy there dives low and forward and takes a tumbling catch. It was the arm ball which Jones didn't pick. She could get only 1 (4).
And in what is a surprise move, England have sent in Katherine Brunt at 3! Will it pay off?
It has been a brilliant performance by the English bowlers restricting India to just 123/6 on a pretty good surface. India got off to a superb start, thanks to Smriti Mandhana but the Women in Blue absorbed too many balls and really struggled after the departure of Mandhana.
She looked in good touch with the bat in whatever we could see of her today. Crisp shots, ball hitting the meat of the bat... Get a feeling that the women's team doing with Deepti what the men did with Ravindra Jadeja - not giving them enough chances. #INDvENG #T20TriSeries https://t.co/puxcmvEpSh— S. Sudarshanan (@Sudarshanan7) February 7, 2020
Anya Shrubsole (3/31) and Katherine Brunt (2/23) shared five wickets between them to break the Indian backbone besides Amy Jones’ sterling work behind the stumps. Can the English batters keep up the good work done by their bowlers? We'll find out soon...
India 123/6 , 20 overs
India score 15 runs in the last over, their most in the match, courtesy Deepti Sharma and a boundary of a wide ball. Deepti Sharma was not out at nine while Arundhati Reddy was unbeaten on seven.
India 103/6, 18 overs
Just after they reach their 100-run mark, India lose both skipper Harmanpreet Kaur for 14 and Taniya Bhatia (8) off Anya Shrubsole in the same over to be in deep trouble.
Harmanpreet Kaur was completely deceived by a slower delivery giving a simple catch to Heather Knight at cover. On the other hand, Bhatia tries to pull a short ball outside off stump, but couldn't get on top of the bounce, giving a simple catch to mid-wicket.
Veda Krishnamurthy’s poor run in Australia continues. She gets a full ball, smashes it right back, which Katherine Brunt drops in the followthrough. However, on the very next ball, she yet again smashes one right back and this time, Brunt doesn’t miss. India slide into trouble now.
India 80/3, 13 overs
India lose their third wicket in the form of Jemimah Rodrigues who departs for a 20-ball 23. Anya Shrubsole bowls a good length delivery outside off, forcing Jemimah Rodrigues to step out. The Indian tries to drive but misses it and Amy Jones once again was brilliant behind the stumps whipping off the bails in a flash. Veda Krishnamurthy comes to the crease.
Meanwhile, speaking to the broadcaster, Smriti Mandhana says, “Shouldn’t have got out at that time, the way I was going. It’s a good batting wicket, but some balls aren’t coming well. So it’s not fully a flat wicket. We aim to go out there and look to play our best cricket as much as we can. (On her social media following) I’m very bad with Instagram, Jemimah does it for me at times.”
India 56/1, 9 overs
Their off-field friendship showing in the middle. Both Jemimah Rodrigues and Smriti Mandhana enjoy the English bowling as the right-hand-left-hand combo accumulates 17 in the last three overs with a single boundary to each one of them. England could have got their second had Danielle Wyatt drops Smriti Mandhana at backward square.
India 39/1, 6 overs
Sophie Ecclestone picks first of the day. Young Shafali Verma tries to give herself room and tries to glide it towards third man, but drags it onto the stumps. Another youngster Jemimah Rodrigues joins Smriti Mandhana in the middle.
India 32/0, 4 overs.
Anya Shrubsole into the attack and finishes off the over conceding eight runs, thanks to Smriti Mandhana delicate batting. Unlike in their last match against Australia, India playing a more cautious game.. Intelligent!
India 6/0, 1 over
Shafali Verma finishes the over with a boundary of the last ball off Natalie Sciver which was otherwise a quiet over.. In the slot, Verma launches high down the ground and the ball lands just short, one bounce over the rope.
England call it right in Melbourne and they will bowl first.
India go in with an unchanged side, while England bring Anya Shrubsole in for Sarah Glenn.
It's time for the Melbourne leg of the T20 tri-series to get underway with the India-England clash. After the end of the first half in Canberra, only net run rate separates the three teams, who have a win and a loss to their name. Both the teams will look to get a win and get a step closer to playing the final on Wednesday (Feb 12).
Coming to this clash, India's batting will be their major worry after coming a cropper against Australia. The likes of Shafali Verma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Veda Krishnamurthy and even Smriti Mandhana are yet to get going and there's no better day to do it than today. One good news for them would be that Pooja Vastrakar, reportedly, was bowling in the nets on Wednesday (Feb 6) and it will be interesting to see if she can make a comeback immediately.
England, too, have their batting worries as Amy Jones has struggled at the top. Only Heather Knight has sailed the batting ship, leading from the front and she would want the others to step up, given the T20 World Cup isn't too far away. Back with the teams and the toss...
Sciver does a Knight; England record second victory of T20 tri-seriesNatalie Sciver did a Heather Knight on Friday (February 7) as the right-hander’s 50 off 38 balls steered England to a four-wicket victory in the T20 tri-series against India at the Junction Oval in Melbourne. With this win, England move up to the table in first place having four points from three games. It was perfect revenge for England after they succumbed in front of India in the tournament opener. Chasing 124, the English batters were in a spot of bother losing their top three – Amy Jones (one), Danielle Wyatt (14) and Katherine Brunt (eight) — with just 28…
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