Women in Blue clean swept the Proteas as they went on to win the three-match ODI series 3-0 on Monday at Reliance Stadium, Vadodara. Winning the toss and electing to bat first, India managed to put up a paltry 146 in 45.5 overs. Harmanpreet Kaur top scored with a cautious 38 (76) and found an able ally in Shikha Pandey who hit a fluent 35 (40). With the ball, Shabnim Ismail provided the perfect start as she sent back Priya Punia in the very first over of the match. Marizanne Kapp was the most lethal of the lot as she struck with 3-20 in her nine overs picking up important wickets of Jemimah Rodrigues (3), Mithali Raj (11) and Harmanpreet Kaur (38).
Chasing 147 was going to be a cake walk for the visitors however the Indian bowlers got the better of them and snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. The South Africans were bundled out for 140 in 48 overs falling short of just six runs. The batters got off to starts but failed to capitalize and the Indians made sure to pounce on every opportunity that was presented to them by Sune Luus and co. Kapp top scored with 29 (43) and batted well with skipper Luus (24). With the ball, Ekta Bisht was the pick of the bowlers as she struck with 3-32 in her 10 overs. The spin duo of Deepti Sharma and Rajeshwari Gayakwad picked up two wickets apiece.
A nail biting finish by the Women in Blue made the third and the final ODI of the series thoroughly entertaining.
(Juili has represented Mumbai Women’s Team, she is an IIT’ian while also does Cricket Journalism)