Thanks to Poonam Yadav’s lethal bowling, India on Friday stunned hosts Australia in the opening encounter of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in Sydney. Batting first, India could only add 132-4 in their quota of 20 overs. However, in response, the reigning World Champion were bowled out for 115 in the last over of the match.
Sixteen-year-old Shafali Verma’s valiant effort saw India reaching 41 for no loss in four overs as she smashed 29 in just 15 balls. Soon, India’s batting collapse began with an exception of Deepti Sharma, who scored 46-ball 49 in the second half of the innings.
For Australia, Ellyse Perry (1/15) and Delissa Kimmince (1/24) were the other wicket-takers.
It appeared that chasing this total would be child’s play for the Australians, but Poonam Yadav had different plans as she dismissed four key Australian batters by conceding just 19 runs.
The Indian skipper had introduced Poonam only after 10 overs had been bowled. By then, Australia appeared to be cruising to victory as they had already amassed 58-2. Poonam’s victims included Alyssa Healy, who made 50 for Australia, Rachael Haynes, Ellyse Perry and Jess Jonassen.
India captain Harmanpreet Kaur later told BBC, “It’s a great feeling, you always look to win your first game as it will set the tone for you. Poonam Yadav is always good for the team, I’m happy for her as she’s had some injuries and made a good comeback.”
Scores in brief
ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, Group A, Sydney (Showground):
India 132-4 (20 overs): Sharma 49*, Jonassen 2-24
Australia 115 (19.5 overs): Healy 51, Poonam 4-19
India won by 17 runs