India Women booked their place in the Women’s Asia Cup T20 2022 final after hammering Thailand Women by 74 runs in the first semi-final at the Sylhet International Cricket Stadium on Thursday, October 13.
Thailand Women won the toss and opted to bowl first. Shafali Verma top-scored for India Women with 42 off 28 while Harmanpreet Kaur (36 off 30) and Jemimah Rodrigues (27 off 26) also made decent contributions. Sornnarin Tippoch’s three for 24, however, restricted the Indians to 148 for six.
Deepti Sharma (3/7) and Rajeshwari Gayakwad (2/10) then came up with excellent bowling performances to restrict Thailand Women to 74 for nine in 20 overs.
Sharma struck in the third over, having Nannapat Koncharoenkai (five) caught as the batter attempted a sweep. Shafali, who had dropped Natthakan Chantham earlier in the over, did not make any mistake this time. Sharma also dismissed Chantham (four) in her next over as Thailand Women got off to a nervous start in the chase.
Next, the off-spinner had Tippoch (five) caught behind with a well-flighted delivery. She finished with exceptional figures of 3/7 from her four overs. Renuka Singh carried on the great work for India Women, sending Chanida Sutthiruang (one) on her way with an excellent yorker. Sneh Rana ended Nattaya Boochatham’s resistance on 21, trapping her lbw with a tossed-up delivery.
Shafali joined the fun by having Rosenan Kanoh (five) stumped as Thailand’s chase completely derailed. Experienced left-arm spinner Gayakwad claimed the scalps of Naruemol Chaiwai (21) and Phannita Maya (0) off consecutive deliveries in the penultimate over.
Sharma then effected a direct run-out of Onnicha Kamchomphu (two) in the last over to further assert India Women’s dominance in the semi-final.
Shafali Verma rises to the challenge for India Women
Earlier, aggressive opener Shafali ensured that India Women put up a competitive score on the board. She smashed five fours and a six in her 28-ball knock. The Indian openers added 38 before Smriti Mandhana (13) hit a low full-toss from Phannita Maya straight to mid-on.
Shafali’s innings ended in the 10th over when she miscued a flighted delivery from Tippoch to short midwicket. Rodrigues played a patient knock before being caught at long-on off Thipatcha Putthawong’s bowling.
Skipper Harmanpreet then struck some crucial boundaries to ensure India Women finished with a challenging score. Sharma and Gayakwad then did the needful with the ball.