Deepti Sharma has become a topic of intense social media conversations as fans rallied behind the Indian cricketer after her no-ball in the final over cost the national team a place in the World Cup semi-final. Had Sharma’s penultimate delivery not been declared illegal, South Africa would have needed to score three runs off the last ball of the match. With eight wickets down, the target may not have been easy to achieve for South African women. While Sharma has had to face public ridicule from some, an overwhelming majority of fans and cricketers have extended their support to the Indian spin bowler.
India almost pulled off a remarkable victory in the last over when Deepti Sharma got Mignon du Preez out. The dismissal of du Preez would have meant that South Africa needed three runs off the last ball. But just when Indians were busy celebrating, du Preez was called back by the umpire since Sharma had bowled a no-ball.
This brought down the target for South Africa to two runs in two balls with a bonus of a free-hit delivery. South Africa went on to win the match comfortably. du Preez was declared Player Of The Match for her knock of unbeaten 52.
India had made 274-7 in their quota of 50 overs. As skipper Mithali Raj said after the match, this was a fighting total and Indians appeared to be heading to a win. But South Africa pulled off a sensational win off the last ball of the match.
India needed to win today’s match to secure a place in the semi-final. India’s heartbreaking defeat meant that West Indies with seven points have now reached the semi-final. Other three teams making to the last four are Australia, England and South Africa.
Two semi-finals will be played on 30 and 31 March respectively.
Here’s how Twitterati reacted to Sharma’s no-ball.
Deepti Sharma’s no ball – it has to be cricket’s one of the biggest heartbreaks! Credit goes to Mignon du Preez for doing what the doctor had ordered. What a thriller – what a script! Again, the line – it’s going to haunt. #INDvSA #CWC2022
— Tahir Ibn Manzoor (@TahirIbnManzoor) March 27, 2022
— IPL Fangirl ❤️???? (@Iplfangirl) March 27, 2022
Deepti Sharma to du Preez, 1 run, India are eliminated, teary exit for the Indian girls, but that’s the way this game rolls, cruel but fair. One small mistake, a small blunder and the brave challenge is over. West Indies are through.#CricketMasterUpdater pic.twitter.com/rt4nsPNL6a
— Cricket Master Updater (@MohsinM55415496) March 27, 2022
— Sudhanshu Ranjan Singh (@memegineers_) March 27, 2022
— Touseef Akhtar (@AkhtarNotShoaib) March 27, 2022
No, No, No, Deepti Sharma wont be sleeping tonight. Get that foot behind the line. All bowlers have done it. It always hurts. It’s sport the sun comes up tomorrow. What a match to lead into the finals. Great stuff both teams. @BCCIWomen @OfficialProteas #INDvSA #WWC2022
— Brad Hogg (@Brad_Hogg) March 27, 2022