Australia held their nerves with the ball to stun India by 5 runs in the first semi-final of the Women's T20 World Cup 2023 in Cape Town on Thursday to enter a record-extending seventh final in a row.
India were cruising in their chase of 173 till the middle overs when Harmanpreet Kaur and Jemimah Rodrigues were at the crease. But things went downhill for the Women in Blue after the Darcie Brown broke the 69-run partnership for the fourth wicket.
Harmanpreet completed her 10th T20I half-century and stitched another 35 runs with Richa Ghosh to keep India in the hunt but once again the Aussies fought back and the momentum shifted in their favour as skipper Harmanpreet ran herself out on 52 in the 15th over.
All-rounder Deepti Sharma and the Indian lower-order tried their best to get as close to the target as possible in the death overs but fell short by a whisker in the end.
"Can't be unluckier than this, to get that momentum back when me and Jemi were batting. And to lose after that, we didn't expect this today. The way I got runout, can't be unluckier than that," Harmanpreet said after the match.
"We discussed about fighting till the last ball. The result didn't go our way, but I am happy with the way we played in this tournament."
Mooney, Lanning star for Australia
Earlier, the five-time champions posted a mammoth 172 for 4 on the board thanks to outstanding knocks from Beth Mooney and captain Meg Lanning.
Mooney added 52 for the opening partnership with fellow opener Alyssa Healy (25) and then stitched a 36-run stand with the skipper Lanning before getting out to Shikha Pandey on 54. She played 37 balls, hitting 7 fours and a six.
Lanning meanwhile, led from the front and guided the team towards a challenging total with her 34-ball 49 not out. She got good support from Ashleigh Gardner during their 53-run third-wicket partnership.
For India, Shikha Pandey bagged 2 wickets while Radha Yadav and Deepti Sharma took two each.
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