Harmanpreet Kaur’s blistering 63 off 38 and Poonam Yadav’s 3 for 18 helped India to win the match by 51 runs and clinch the five-match T20I series by 4-0.
Put into bat, India got the big blow in the very first over when Smriti Mandhana went for a duck. Her poor form continued as she tried to clear the infield, but gave an easy catch to Priyadharshani at mid off. Experienced Mithali Raj, along with youngster Rodrigues tried to build a partnership and they both added 28 runs for the second wicket before the former got trapped LBW by Athapaththu.
Captain Harmanpreet Kaur came into bat at no. 4. Pressure fell upon Rodrigues and Kaur after the loss of two early wickets. Rodrigues got an early life at 9, and she utilised it beautifully through a steady association of 70 with Kaur. Once they both got settled, it became difficult for Sri Lanka bowlers to get past their bat as they started hitting all around the ground. Two back to back half-centuries gave the confidence to Rodrigues to play a fearless cricket while Kaur played a captain’s knock, mixed caution with aggression.
Their fierce innings helped India to cross 100 within 11 overs. This time, Rodrigues fell for 46 off 31 with 6 fours and a six. Veda Krishnamurthy was promoted at no. 5 but failed to contribute as she was dismissed after scoring 8. Soon Anuja Patil too joined her. Middle order couldn’t stay longer and soon India started struggling at 152/7 with Kaur at one end after 17 overs. Kaur’s 38-ball 63, comprised with 3 fours and 5 sixes, came to an end in the 18th over while Siriwardene’s bowling did the rest, as they restricted India within 156 on board.
Chasing 157, Sri Lanka too didn’t get the start what was needed. Athapaththu tried to sweep but ended up giving an easy catch to Patil at slip and went for a duck in the very first over. Soon Mendis joined her captain in the dugout after scoring 10. Experienced Siriwardene, along with Anushka Sanjeewani tried to resurrect the innings and both added 40 runs for the fourth wicket before Siriwardene became Radha Yadav’s first victim.
Middle order batters were unable to build a partnership as Poonam Yadav picked up 3 wickets in the same over; which eventually helped India to bundle their opponent within 105.
India completed their series on a winning note as they won both the series convincingly. Chamari Athapaththu became the Player of the Series, Mithali Raj was awarded The Best Batter whereas Mansi Joshi became the Best Bowler in ODIs. Youngster Jemimah Rodrigues was awarded The Best Batter as well as The Player of the Series and Poonam Yadav became The Best Bowler in T20 format.