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In an exciting fashion, Australia secures victory in the women's ODI series as India's attempt to catch up falls short.
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In an exciting fashion, Australia secures victory in the women’s ODI series as India’s attempt to catch up falls short.

In Mumbai, Australia secured a thrilling three-run victory over India in the second women’s one-day international, thanks to Deepti Sharma’s record-breaking five-wicket performance and Richa Ghosh’s impressive batting skills.

Following a clumsy and error-prone fielding performance from India, Australia was able to score eight runs for a total of 258. However, during their response at Wankhede Stadium on Saturday (Sunday AEDT), the home team seemed to be on a successful trajectory before struggling towards the end and ultimately finishing with eight runs for a total of 255.

Australia’s victory secures their unbeaten streak in bilateral women’s ODI series against India, as they now hold a 2-0 lead in the three-match series. Annabel Sutherland’s impressive performance at the end of the match, where she took 3 wickets for 47 runs, was crucial in securing the win. One of her key wickets was that of Ghosh at 96 runs, when India were in a strong position at 4-218.

India was regretful as they missed seven opportunities to catch the ball, but Australia’s catching was just as sloppy. Ghosh was fortunate to have been given two chances, at zero and 36 runs, by Phoebe Litchfield and Sutherland respectively, before her impressive performance came to an end when she was caught by Litchfield and bowled by Sutherland.

In the final three overs, Sutherland and Ash Gardner took 1-3 each, making it impossible for India to catch up in their chase. Tahlia McGrath’s dropped catch in the 50th over allowed debutant Shreyanka Patil to score a four on the last ball, but it did not affect the outcome of the game.

Throughout the game, we remained composed and focused, as stated by the player awarded with the title of “player-of-the-match,” Sutherland. It was an exciting opportunity to have at the end of the game. I am grateful for the trust that Midgey (Alyssa Healy, the captain) had in me and I was able to successfully fulfill my role.

Richa Ghosh was out for 96, four runs short of a century, as her team fell four runs short of victory.

Yastika Bhatia, aged 14, was removed from the game early on. Smriti Mandhana, who was absent due to illness in the first match, made a stylish 34 runs as the opening batter. However, she was caught by McGrath in the deep after hitting a second ball from leg-spinner Alana King.

Jemimah Rodrigues, who was in good form, scored 44 runs and contributed to a partnership of 88 for the third wicket. However, she was caught by Litchfield with an excellent diving catch. Ghosh struggled with cramps and when she was eventually dismissed, India’s chances of equalizing the series disappeared.

Sharma made history as the first Indian bowler to achieve a five-wicket haul against Australia in women’s ODIs. She utilized impressive spin to capture 5-38, causing a downfall for the tourists from 1-117 to 8-219. However, King’s strong performance of 28 not out, along with India’s poor fielding, helped boost Australia’s final score.

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Amanjot Kaur dismissed Litchfield (63) on the second ball of the game and Bhatia dropped her again on 16 at slip. However, Litchfield took advantage of the mistakes and teamed up with Ellyse Perry (50) to score 77 runs for the second wicket, just like in the previous game where they were both heroes.

Sharma was able to dismiss Beth Mooney for 10 runs through a leg before wicket, followed by an in-form McGrath for 24 runs. Litchfield also fell to Patil’s off break, giving her first wicket in an ODI match as she edged the ball to wicketkeeper Ghosh. Sharma continued her success by getting Georgia Wareham caught by Mandhana for 22 runs, and then taking a caught-and-bowled dismissal for her fifth wicket with Sutherland’s 23 runs.

King successfully challenged an lbw decision and was spared by Indian captain Harmanpreet Kaur when she was at eight, taking advantage of these opportunities to shift the momentum in favor of Australia.

The last match of the one-day series will take place in Mumbai on Tuesday, followed by a three-game T20 series to wrap up the tour.

Source: theguardian.com