Himachal beat Uttar Pradesh in the Plate group final of Senior Women’s one-day league 2016-17. The SA Sharma-led team registered a 48-run win against Deepti’s side in Vadodara.
The top two teams from the three plate groups which qualified for the knock-out phase were: Kerala and Karnataka from Group A, Odisha and Uttar Pradesh from Group B, Himachal and Haryana from Group C. The six teams then faced off for a spot in the finals. While Uttar Pradesh beat Kerala in the first semi-final by six wickets after making it through to the quarter-finals, Himachal defeated Karnataka by 62 runs in the second semi-final.
Plate Group B included - Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Team Rajasthan
Plate Group C comprised of - Himachal, Haryana, Assam, Saurashtra, Tripura, Chhattisgarh
After electing to bat in the final, Himachal lost the wicket of K Verma with 18 runs on board. However, the top-scorer of the tournament, Neena Choudhary then joined M Devi to lay a solid foundation and ensure the team a competitive total. The pair had taken the team to 108 when Shefali Sahu accounted for the opener to end the partnership.
65 runs later, UP captain, Deepti accounted for her opposite number, S Sharma (23) to leave Himachal on 173 for three with 12 balls left in the game. Three wickets then feel in the penultimate over. Off the first ball of the over, T Kanwer was run out by Nishu Choudhary while Neena was run out with the score still on 173 by Neetu Singh. Four runs later, with seven balls left in the innings NS Chauhan was sent back by Sahu. In the last over, the skipper caught V Rana off her own bowling, however S Kumari and R Singh took Himachal to 185 for seven in their quota of overs.
Complemented by rest of the attack, the highest wicket-taker in the tournament, Kanwer, then helped the team defend the total.
Having set UP a 186-run target, R Singh dealt the first blow to claim Ekta in the eight over with 15 runs on the board and followed up with the wicket of Neetu five runs later. 35 runs later, Kanwer then sent back Aditi while N Chauhan claimed Deepti. A few overs later Kanwer accounted for Sahu and followed up with the wicket of Tanu Kala to leave UP on 77 for six in the 30th over. The Himachal attack struck at regular intervals as they built the pressure and kept the batsmen in check.
Nishu Choudhary, who took the team past the three-figure mark with Aayushi Chaudhary but the later was run out with the team on 106 as they looked to add runs to the tall. Six overs later the middle-order bat too was sent back by A Ansari. With 49 runs required off 18 balls, Anju Rani joined Sweta in the middle, but without a run added to the scoreline, the latter was run out leaving the team on 137 for nine. Since Shivanji Raj could not bat the UP innings came to an end in 47.5 overs.