Australia Women produced a dominant performance to hammer India Women by nine wickets in the first T20I to take a 1-0 lead in the five-match series at D.Y. Patil Stadium, here on Friday.
Brilliant quickfire knocks by Deepti Sharma (36 not out off 15) and Richa Ghosh (36 off 20) propelled India Women to 172/5 in 20 overs. Apart from Deepti and Richa, the likes of Shafali Verma (21 off 10), Smriti Mandhana (28 off 22), and Harmanpreet Kaur (21 off 23) got decent starts but couldn't convert to big innings.
In reply, opener Beth Mooney (89 not out off 57) played a sensational knock and led Australia's domination throughout the innings.
Mooney was well supported by Tahlia McGrath (40 not out off 29) and Alyssa Healy (37 off 23) as Australia chased down the target quite comfortably in overs with nine wickets in hand.
Devika Vaidya (1/33) was the lone wicket-taker for India, who were ordinary with the ball as well in the fielding.
Earlier, put into bat first, Shafali Verma smacked 21 runs off 10 balls to give India a flying start before falling to Elysse Perry in the third over. After Shafali's wicket, Smriti Mandhana continued the charge and hit a few boundaries to continue the momentum.
But, Perry struck again with the wicket of Jemimah Rodrigues (0), leaving India at 45/2 in 4.5 overs. The Aussies managed to keep a lid on the rate between overs 6-12 and also took the wickets of Smriti and Harmanpreet during that period.
India were four down for 76 in the 12th over, when Richa Ghosh walked out to bat and changed the complexion of the game. She stitched a quickfire half-century partnership with Devika Vaidya (25 not out), which got India going.
Richa got out in the 17th over but she had set the tone for Deepti Sharma, who came out all guns blazing. Deepti mashed four fours in a row in the last over to take India to a score of 172/5 in 20 overs.
Brief scores: India Women Innings 172/5 in 20 overs (Deepti Sharma 36 not out, Richa Ghosh 36; Ellyse Perry 2-10) lost to Australia Women 173/1 in 18.1 overs (Beth Mooney 89 not out, Tahlia McGrath 40 not out; Devika Vaidya 1-33) by 9 wickets.
( 400 Words)