WPL 2024: Smriti Mandhana Blitz, Disciplined Bowlers Power RCB To 8-Wicket Win Over Gujarat Giants

WPL 2024: Smriti Mandhana Blitz, Disciplined Bowlers Power RCB To 8-Wicket Win Over Gujarat Giants

Mandhana (43, 27b, 8x4, 1x6) and S Meghana (36, 28b, 5x4, 1x6), who added 40 runs for the second wicket, made light work of a 108-run target.

PTIUpdated: Tuesday, February 27, 2024, 11:01 PM IST
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Captain Smriti Mandhana's blitz and a disciplined effort by bowlers powered Royal Challengers Bangalore to a comprehensive eight-wicket win over sloppy Gujarat Giants in their Women's Premier League match here on Tuesday.

Mandhana (43, 27b, 8x4, 1x6) and S Meghana (36, 28b, 5x4, 1x6), who added 40 runs for the second wicket, made light work of a 108-run target.

Royal Challengers finished their towelling of the Giants in a mere 12.3 overs for their second win on the bounce in this WPL.

They just had to build on the strong foundation laid by the RCB bowlers, who restricted Giants to 107 for 7. Pacer Renuka Singh (2/14) and left-arm spinner Sophie Molineux (3/25) did the star turn for the home side after it opted to bowl.

The RCB chase began with a bang as Mandhana slammed two fours in the first two balls off pacer Lea Tahuhu a drive past the point and a well-timed pull carrying the ball to the fence in a jiffy.

The graceful left-hander added another four through a pull a ball later as RCB amassed 13 runs in the first over.

With boundaries raining, the Bangalore outfit marched to 32 for no loss in the third over but lost Sophine Devine to Ashleigh Gardner in the fourth over.

But her dismissal did not slow down the scoring as Mandhana smoked a six over the head off Tahuhu to keep the momentum going.

A fifty was there for taking, but a tame push off left-arm spinner Tanuja Kanwar cut short her entertaining stint.

Her innings also put in perspective the early struggles of Giants' batters, who limped without timing or power.

There was a certain tackiness on the pitch alright, but the RCB bowlers also hit the right length to keep the Giants batters on a tight leash.

The dismissal of Giants' skipper Beth Mooney (8) was a perfect example for this.

Mooney had struck Renuka for two boundaries earlier, and she immediately changed the line coming around the wicket.

She was rewarded with the big wicket when Mooney failed to tackle a delivery that shaped in to beat her defensive prod.

Renuka soon ousted Phoebe Litchfield too when the Aussie batter failed to drag her feet back inside the crease before Richa Ghosh, standing up, completed her stumping.

The pacer bowled her full quota of four overs on the trot and returned with handsome numbers of 4-0-14-2.

From that point, the Giants kept on losing wickets, including generally quick scorers like Ashleigh Gardner, and it thwarted their attempts to give some steam to the innings.

Dayalan Hemalatha's unbeaten 31 off 25 balls helped them go past the 100-run mark.

They ended the first 10 overs at 44 for two, and the back 10 too did not prove much different as RCB bowlers kept chipping away without conceding too many runs.

That the Giants managed a total of just 10 fours and two sixes in their entire innings underlined their tough time.

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