New Zealand beat In­dia to clinch women’s T20I series

Millennium Post - - Mp Sport -

HAMIL­TON: An all-round show by So­phie Devine helped New Zealand de­feat In­dia by two runs to sweep the three match women's Twenty20 In­ter­na­tional series here on Sun­day.

In­dia re­quired 16 runs off the fi­nal over and Mithali Raj needed to hit a four off the fi­nal ball but Leigh Kasperek held her nerve to con­cede just one run, ac­cord­ing to the ICC'S web­site. A tight 19th over from Devine was as vi­tal, as she con­ceded just seven runs in their de­fence of 161/7, as In­dia, de­spite an en­ter­tain­ing 86 from Sm­riti Mand­hana, fin­ished short on 159/4.

Devine, hav­ing made 72 off 52 balls, got the big wick­ets of Mand­hana and Jemimah Ro­drigues to fin­ish with 2/21.

It was Mand­hana's sec­ond fifty of the series as well, and her fourth fifty-plus score in the last six matches across for­mats. Her sec­ond wicket part­ner­ship with Jemimah Ro­drigues set the tone.

They kept the bound­aries com­ing, never let­ting the re­quired run-rate get out of con­trol, and ad­just­ing well to the con­stant bowl­ing changes to reach 76 in nine overs.

When Mand­hana was fi­nally dis­missed, caught by Lea Tahuhu off Devine in the 16th over, the equa­tion was down to 39 needed off 27. How­ever, in the face of tight bowl­ing, it proved too much for In­dia.

The ex­pe­ri­enced Mithali, re­called to the side to pro­vide some sta­bil­ity in the mid­dle or­der, did ex­actly that af­ter the wick­ets of Ro­drigues and Har­man­preet Kaur, adding 24 not out off 20. Deepti Sharma did her bit with 21 not out off 16, in­clud­ing a six, but they couldn't take their side over the line. Ear­lier, opt­ing to bat, New Zealand scored 161/7.

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