Melbourne: India women have won the last-ball thriller, defeating New Zealand by four runs and is the first team to enter the semifinals stage of ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in Australia.
Three straight wins led India to the knock-out stage at Junction Oval in Melbourne. India are at the top of their Group A with 6 points from 3 matches.
India managed to put just 133 on the board in 20 overs after a mere collapse but again their spin department came on top helping them to restrict New Zealand to 130.
After put India bat, Indian openers failed to provide a perfect start. Smriti Mandhana only scored two boundaries and was removed in the 3rd over by Lea Tahuhu.
Shafali Verma on the other hand along with Tanya Bhatia added a 57-run stand. Bhatia was dismissed by Rosemary Mair in the 10th over. Shafali held at one end but lost her batting partners in quick intervals.
After dropping on two occasions, the 16-year-old managed to score 34-ball 46 which included three sixes and four fours. Radha Yadav’s 9-ball 14 while batting at Number 9 position helped India to post 133 for the loss of eight wickets. Rosemary and Amelia Kerr picked two wickets each for NZ.
NZ Skipper Sophie Devine and their most experienced batter Suzie Bates failed to score runs in the most important clash. Madey Green and Katey Martin provided stability for the fourth-wicket but Rajeshwari Gayakwad broke the vital partnership in the 15th over.
Later Kerr 19-ball 34 didn’t help the Kiwis to reach the finishing line and they lost by four runs. India became the first side to qualify for the last four of the Women’s T20 World Cup.