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BCCI Staff in Mumbai 18 March 2014 - 01:03pm IST

Report: NZ vs Ind (Women), WT20 Warm-up Match

Indian eves lose despite Raj’s half-century

India Women lost their first warm-up game of the 2014 ICC Women’s World T20 to New Zealand Women by 17 runs. Chasing 139, the batting line-up of the Mithali Raj-led side was held to 121 for eight by the White Ferns.

Chasing the competitive score, the Indian line-up collapsed after a 26-run opening stand. Smriti Mandhana, who came out to open with captain Raj, was sent back by Morna Nielsen in the fifth over. Dealing a double blow, she also accounted for Shikha Pandey in the same over to leave India on 27 for two. In her next over, Nielsen dismantled Poonam Raut's woodwork, and Hayley Jensen followed up with the wickets of Madhuri Mehta and Latika Kumari.

Raj continued to stoically hold up one end and she went past her half-century. However, she did not receive much support from the other end, until she eventually retired hurt on 53.

Harmanpreet Kaur and experienced campaigner Jhluan Goswami then strove to salvage the innings, but they could not stem the fall of wickets.

With the team struggling on 117, Kaur was dismissed by Sophie Devine for 27 in the penultimate over. With her team in the driver's seat, Frances McKay caught Sravanthi Naidu off her own bowling and trapped Soniya Dabir lbw as NZ sailed to a comfortable win.

Earlier, after Raj chose to field first, the Goswami-led attack dealt a few early blows to leave NZ Women on 27 for three in the fifth over. Goswami, who has been spearheading the attack for the Indian eves, bowled Sam Curtis out for zero and Devine for five, while Pandey removed Suzie Bates. Sara McGlashan and Katie Perkins then stemmed the fall of wickets and had taken the team to 93 when Archana Das struck to remove the former. 28 runs later, Goswami accounted for Perkins’ wicket, and in the following over, Pandey claimed Nicola Browne and Rachel Priest.

Besides Pandey's double strike in the penultimate over, Morna Nielson too returned; she was run out for one. Hayley Jensen, who then joined Frances McKay in the last over, helped add four and took her team to 138 for eight by the end of the innings.