If Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli are the T20 stars, then Mithali Raj can be called T20 superstar. The title totally suits her as she surpassed Rohit Sharma in total number of T20I runs after smashing half-century against Ireland during ICC Women’s World T20 clash. Raj scored a half-century against Ireland; taking the tally of her T20I runs to 2283, thereby becoming the top Indian player to get most runs for India in T20s.
As Indian batswomen failed to perform yesterday, Mithali Raj came to the rescue scoring 56-ball 51, taking the score to 145/6 in first innings. With her innings which saw 4 fours and 1 six, the right-hander created a new record to become the highest run-getter for India in T20s with 2283 runs. Rohit Sharma (2207 runs) is the second in the list, followed by men’s team skipper Virat Kohli (2102 runs).
Put in to bat, India got off to a steady 67-run start from Mithali and Smriti Mandhana (33 off 29 balls) before the southpaw departed. The young Jemimah Rodrigues (18 off 11; 4X3) got off to a brisk start and quickly added 40 runs for the second wicket with Mithali before being stumped off Irish captain Laura Delany’s bowling.
Thereafter, the in-form India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (7) and No.5 Veda Krishnamurthy (9) departed in quick succession, leaving India reeling at 127/4. Mithali, however, waged a lone battle bringing up her sedate half century off 54 deliveries but perished soon, caught behind off Kim Garth. Towards the end, Dayalan Hemalatha (4), Deepti Sharma (10 not out) and Radha Yadav (1 not out) failed to accelerate the scoring rate as India ended up with 145.
With the ball, Indian spinners Radha Yadav (3/25), Deepti Sharma (2/15), Poonam Yadav (1/14) and skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (1/10 in 4 overs) picked wickets at regular intervals although India’s batting performance left a lot to be desired. Ireland were never in the chase conceding as many as 65 dot balls (nearly 11 overs). Once Deepti got the wicket of Gaby Lewis (9) with an off-break and Poonam’s leg-break saw the end of Clare Shillington (23) stumped by Taniya Bhatia, Ireland had no chance whatsoever as India made the semis.
With Agency inputs