Deepti four-for, Raj fifty help India seal series

India Women 179 for 4 (Raj 53*, Mandhana 46, Kumari 4-39) beat Sri Lanka Women 178 for 9 (Manodara 43*, Weerakkody 37, Deepti 4-23) by six wickets

File photo – Mithali Raj’s unbeaten fifty sealed India’s easy win © Getty Images

Medium-pacer Deepti Sharma‘s career-best 4 for 23, followed by a patient 53 not out from Mithali Raj, helped India Women claim an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match ODI series, with a six-wicket win over Sri Lanka Women in Ranchi. India had already climbed to sixth place on the ICC Women’s Championship points table after the first ODI, and the win today helped them take a three-point lead over seventh-placed Pakistan Women.

Opting to bat, Sri Lanka had a promising start as Chamari Atapattu and Prasadani Weerakkody added 27 in 5.4 overs. Once Deepti bowled Atapattu for 11, however, the scoring rate dipped and Sri Lanka were tied down further by quick wickets. Weerakkody was involved in a stand of 37 for the second wicket with Yasoda Mendis but the partnership came in almost 18 overs. By the 35th over, Sri Lanka were struggling at 101 for 6, having lost wickets to Deepti, Rajeshwari Gayakwad and Poonam Yadav. They rallied briefly when Dilani Manodara and Eshani Lokusuriyage added 49 quick runs for the seventh wicket. Manodara carried on, scoring 43 not out off 51 balls, but the early wickets meant that India were left with 179 to chase.

The hosts were in control once the openers, Smriti Mandhana and Thirush Kamini, added 67 in a little over 13 overs. Mandhana scored a run-a-ball 46, hitting the only six of the match, and after her dismissal Raj and Harmanpreet Kaur kept the chase on track with a 64-run partnership for the third wicket. India lost four wickets – all to left-arm spinner Sugandika Kumari – but Raj’s 80-ball stay at the crease ensured victory in the 44th over. Raj’s 40th ODI fifty included four boundaries.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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