Report: Ind vs WI – M1, 2013 ICC Women’s WC
Cheered by an enthusiastic crowd, India registered a comprehensive 105-run win over West Indies at the Brabourne stadium in the opening match of the 2013 ICC Women's World Cup. After centurion M Thirush Kamini and opening partner Poonam Raut (72) powered the Mithali Raj-led side to India Women’s highest score in the 50-over World Cup, their bowlers dealt early blows and followed up with wickets at regular intervals to take India to victory.
Earlier, put in to bat, Raut and Kamini got the hosts off to a flying start with the highest opening stand for India Women in a World Cup. Although Raut scored at a quicker pace initially and was the first to reach the 50-run mark, Kamini soon overtook her partner after reaching her fifty with a boundary down fine-leg off Tremayne Smartt. With the duo in sublime touch, runs came freely for India while the West Indies bowlers struggled to get a breakthrough.
Kamini hit the first six of the innings when she launched Shanel Daley over mid-wicket in the second powerplay. However, on the last ball of the over, the left-arm pacer trapped Raut lbw to end the flourishing partnership for 175. But with the team already in a commanding position, Jhulan Goswami was promoted up the order to bat at No.3. The tall pacer added a quick 21-ball 36, including six boundaries. Timing the ball beautifully, Kamini became the first Indian woman to score a century in a World Cup. She brought up the landmark with a single off Anisa Mohammed, but was run out without adding to her score further. Goswami soon followed her back to the hut.
After the departure of the opener, India added 60 runs off 47 balls. Deandra Dottin, who had claimed Goswami, also sent back Reema Malhotra, N Niranjana and Harmanpreet Kaur (36 off 22 balls; 4x4, 2x6). Although Dottin got the last three wickets at quick intervals, the damage was already done as India posted 284 runs on the board.
Chasing 285, WI suffered early blows and weren’t allowed to build partnerships by the Indian bowling attack and alert fielding. It was Kaur’s direct hit from mid-on at the non-striker’s end to send back Kycia A Knight that got the ball rolling in the first over. And 15 runs later, opener Sarah Taylor edged Amita Sharma to Karuna Jain, who took a low catch behind the stumps to send the West Indies on the back foot. With two early blows, the West Indies needed a solid partnership to stay in the game. But just as the Shemaine Campbelle-Kyshona Knight partnership began to take shape, N Niranjana knocked over the former’s stumps to end the stand.
With three wickets down for 38 runs and the required run-rate creeping up, Dottin started to counterattack. Getting off the mark with consecutive boundaries, she smashed Gouhar Sultana for a couple of sixes over long-off as well. But after hitting Niranjana for 16 runs, including two big hits, she was trapped her lbw in the same over, while Knight was dismissed by Sultana in the next one.
With half the side back in the pavilion for 84, Daley joined West Indies skipper Merissa Aguilleira at the crease in an attempt to rescue the innings. But with the partnership one run short of fifty, Niranjana sent back the Aguilleira, and a while later Malhotra followed up with the wicket of Daley. With 120 runs still required, Sultana dismissed Shaquana Quintyne. And couple of overs later, Smartt departed after offering a return catch to Goswami. The pacer then wrapped up the West Indies innings for 179 with the wicket of Shakera Selman.
Brief scores: India 284/6 in 50 overs (M Thirush Kamini 100, P Raut 72, D Dottin 3/32) beat West Indies 179 all out in 44.3 overs (D Dottin 39, N Niranjana 3/52, G Sultana 2/38) by 105 runs
Player of the Match: Thirush Kamini for her match-winning ton at the top of the Indian innings.