India defeated Ireland by a score of five runs (Duckworth-Lewis-Stern) in a rain-shortened match in Gqeberha to go to the Women’s T20 World Cup semi-finals.
When the game was prematurely called due to heavy rain, Ireland was chasing 156 with a score of 54-2 in the ninth over.
India now joins England in Group 2 qualification thanks to the victory.
Smriti Mandhana had earlier managed to score a career-high 87 from 56 balls despite being dropped four times, aiding India in reaching 155-6.
England is currently in first place in the group thanks to their higher net run rate, so barring a humiliating loss to Pakistan on Tuesday, they are almost guaranteed to advance as group winners and avoid defending champion Australia in the semifinals.
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Strong winds that were blowing across St George’s Park prior to the arrival of the rain made the middle of the field extremely challenging, especially for the fielders, and Ireland dropped a total of five catches.
Mandhana took most of her additional opportunities with a fantastic knock that featured nine fours and three thunderous wind-assisted sixes over deep mid-wicket.
After Amy Hunter was out after the first delivery of the innings, Ireland’s reply got off to a terrible start, falling to 1-2 when Orla Prendergast was bowled by Renuka Singh Thakur four balls later.
However, a brisk 32 from 25 balls from Gaby Lewis and 17 from 20 by skipper Laura Delany led somewhat of a rally, putting Ireland just short of the DLS par score when the rain started to fall.
Reaction: “It was one of the hardest games I’ve ever played.”
Smriti Mandhana, the player of the game for India, said, “It was one of the toughest games I’ve played, not just because of the pitch but also because of the pace and the wind. Unexpectedly, it became more difficult.
“The first 30 balls were very taxing, and I began to wonder if I had forgotten how to bat! I instructed myself to just position myself better when playing shots.
Harmanpreet Kaur, the captain of India, said, “It was a wonderful game for us. Smriti [Mandhana] scored a few runs, which was crucial because if she gives us that start, we can take advantage of it and amass a large total. It’s encouraging to see her gaining ground.
“Qualifying matters a lot. We’ve put in a lot of effort over the years, so it’s encouraging to see that we’ll get another chance in the semifinals.
Laura Delany, the captain of Ireland, said, “We weren’t really prepared for the weather delay, which kind of came out of nowhere. Myself and Gaby [Lewis] were only trying to form a relationship and hit boundaries; we hadn’t even looked at the DLS score.
“In 2018, the playing field wasn’t level. Cricket Ireland has made significant investments, and we now have contracts. Even though there are still some things we could do better, we have grown.