Amelia Kerr's emotional moment

Venue : Junction Oval, Melbourne

Toss : New Zealand Women won the toss and opt to bowl

Harmanpreet Kaur: We wanted to bat only. We have two changes today. Smriti and Radha come in for Arundhati and Richa. We are doing well in patches, we need to do well in batting. We will try to give our best today. I did struggle in the last two games but hopefully I can do well here.

Sophie Devine: We are going to bowl first. It’s a fresh wicket, we would like to make most of the conditions. Couple of changes for us. I thought Sri Lanka put us under the pump early on, we gotta be on the money against India. It’s about sticking to your strengths and not get carried away. Hoping to continue my form.

Squad

New Zealand Women: Sophie Devine(c), Rachel Priest(w), Suzie Bates, Maddy Green, Katey Martin, Amelia Kerr, Hayley Jensen, Anna Peterson, Leigh Kasperek, Lea Tahuhu, Rosemary Mair

India Women : Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Taniya Bhatia(w), Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur(c), Deepti Sharma, Veda Krishnamurthy, Shikha Pandey, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad

Mandhana flatters to deceive

Smriti Mandhana return to the squad after her recovery from viral fever. India already won two matches that played already and looks for the hat-trick victory. Shafali Verma who is in glorious form accompanied by Mandhana gets in crease. Tahuhu opens the attack for New Zealand. India expect a fabulous performance from this duo. But Tahuhu in her second over dismissed Mandhana and provide the New Zealand’s well needed wicket. Mandhana flatters to deceive in her comeback game for India

Taniya Bhatia gets in and joins hand with Verma as this duo opened and performed well in the India vs Bangladesh match. This duo starts to strike in an aggressive way where Shafali Verma strike two consecutive sixes in Anna Peterson’s over. At the end of power play India scored 49 runs for a wicket lose.

Shafali Verma scored 46 runs
Shafali Verma scored 46 runs

Struggled middle order

Bhatia struggle to face ball as she placed lots of dot balls. The long struggle of Bhatia(23 runs off 25 balls) comes to an end when she got dismissed by Rosemary Mair. Bhatia and Verma lead India to score 68 run with 51 runs partnership. Shafali stands strong from the beginning and paired with the all rounder Jemimah Rodrigues.

Soon Rosemary Mair sent Rodrigues to pavilion when she scored 10 runs from 9 balls. Shafali Verma stands alone as the remaining players failed to pair with her to provide the partnership which is very much needed by India. Captain Harmanpreet Kaur(1 run from 5 balls) too return pavilion with out scoring much.

Rosemary Mair
Rosemary Mair picks 2 wicket

Verma missed her half century

India gets in struggle when Amelia Kerr picked Verma’s wicket while Verma is just 4 runs away from her half century. Though India started well in the beginning, it seems collapsed when the middle order players failed to show up. India crossed 100 runs in the 15th over for 5 wicket loss.

New Zealand bowlers
New Zealand bowlers perfect spell collapsed India

Handy contributions from Shikha and Radha 

In the very next over Veda return to pavilion when Amelia Kerr dismissed her with a review. Shikha Pandey and Radha Yadav dragged India towards a score of 133. Radha Yadav hits a massive six in the last over and dismissed in the last ball while try to cover a single.

Over-view

India have smashed, nudged, strangled and somehow scraped their way to 133 – a total that is yet to be hunted down in this World Cup. Shafali Verma carried on from where she left off in the last game and held the fort despite lack of rhythm at the other end. India yet again chopped and changed their batting order which didn’t really produce the desired outcome with Taniya, despite her 25-ball 23, consuming as many as six dots in the powerplay. The arrival of Jemimah and HarmanPreet didn’t really add any value to Shafali’s confidence as both the experienced batters got out in the space of 2 overs. Some handy contributions from the pair of Radha and Shikha, also thanks to some shabby fielding from the White Ferns, helped India get this total.

Priest disappoint New Zealand

In order to continue the winning streak New Zealand have to chase down 134 runs. Priest and Devine are at the crease, Priest is on strike. Deepti Sharma opens the attack against New Zealand. Priest hits couple of boundaries in the first over from Deepti Sharma. But its the game changer Shikha Pandey who bowls the second over and without any disappointment uproot the wicket of Priest(12 runs from 9 balls).

Shikha Pandey
Shikha Pandey picks Rachel Priest’s wicket

Indian bowlers restrict New Zealand from scoring

New Zealand struggled to score and also lose Bates for 6 runs to Deepti Sharma’s slower ball. After the power play New Zealand scored 30 runs for two wicket lose whereas India scored 49 runs for a wicket lose. Poonam Yadav after providing three runs in the first over, dismissed Devine in the first ball of her second over. Indian bowlers restrict New Zealand from scoring. As a result New Zealand scored 46 runs for three wicket loss after 10 overs.

Maddy Green’s well settled partnership with Katey Martin

Maddy Green and Katey Martin paired and starts to strike steady. New Zealand scored 19 runs in two overs when Maddy Green striked aggressively with boundaries, the most expected by New Zealand. This pumped up the New Zealand’s score and results in 63 runs required from 42 balls.
New Zealand needed 55 runs from the last five overs, which seems a bit high number to achieve. India still have an over of Poonam, Shikha and Radha Yadav while Deepti has two. Its Radha Yadav bowling the 16th over, Katey Martin hit a four in the second ball but Radha Yadav has her wicket in the next ball.
With a need of 44 runs from 21 balls, Hayley Jensen gets in ground and paired with Amelia Kerr. The two left-arm spinners have bowled out, leaving the last three to Poonam, Shikha and Deepti. New Zealand need couple of big overs and it should be now. Deepti Sharma bowled and spelled 6 runs in total.

The game saviour – Shikha Pandey

The most crucial over was bowled by Poonam Yadav New Zealand seeks opportunity and strike 18 runs thar includes 4 boundaries. With a need of 16 for 6 balls Shikha Pandey to bowl the final over. The pressure builds over the players of both the team. With an unexpected return catch dropped by Pandey New Zealand advanced towards the victory. With a boundary in the fifth ball of the last over New Zealand is in need of 5 runs from last delivery. The terrific match comes to an end after a leg bye run in the last ball. Finally India win by three runs, and entered into semi-final. Amelia Kerr runs into emotion with tears after her struggle to win failed.
Shikha Pandey saved the game
Shikha Pandey saved the game

Player of the match

Shafali Verma(India)

Batting : 46 runs off 34 balls.

I was happy with the performance and wanted to give a good start at the powerplay. I waited for the loose balls which is my strength and it paid off today. I practised a lot with the boys and I want to thank my dad and all the boys at the practice who helped me train well in batting.

Shafali Verma consecutive player of the match award
Shafali Verma consecutive player of the match award

Captains view

Harmanpreet Kaur | India captain: It is a great feeling when your team is performing like that. We did the same mistakes, we got a good start in the first 10 overs and we didn’t carry the momentum. We did bowl well in patches and some times we were not up to the mark and have to focus on those areas. She is giving us good starts and I hope she continues doing that as quick runs at the top is really important to us.

Sophie Devine | New Zealand captain: We thought we did a fantastic job, with how Shafali came out at the top, to restrict them to 133 on a reasonably good wicket was a great effort. We adapted to the conditions as we expected it to be a bit more pacier and bouncier, it wasn’t. Adjusting our lines and lengths and again our spinners came on board and really tied them down. I think the way the team nearly closed out the game today was fantastic. Green and Martin spent time in the middle and then Kerr did a brilliant job of getting us that close. That’s all you can ask for. We can take a lot of positives from this game. Our bowling on how we came back and how we almost finished the game. We cannot dwell too much as we have a game on Saturaday.

Points table
Women’s World cup T20I Points table for group A