India beat Sri Lanka by 114 runs in first Women’s World Cup cricket qualifier | cricket | Hindustan Times
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India beat Sri Lanka by 114 runs in first Women’s World Cup cricket qualifier

India women’s cricket team rode on fifties by Deepti Sharma, Devika Vaidya and captain Mithali Raj to start their World Cup qualifying campaign with a confidence-boosting win against Sri Lanka women’s cricket team.

cricket Updated: Feb 07, 2017 19:36 IST
HT Correspondent
Women's World Cup qualifier

India women’s cricket team huddle prior to their first match in the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifiers 2017 vs Sri Lanka women’s cricket team in Colombo on Tuesday.(ICC)

India women’s cricket team thrashed Sri Lanka women’s cricket team by 114 runs in the first Women’s World Cup qualifier match at the P Sara Oval in Colombo on Tuesday.

Electing to bat, India put up a solid display with the bat as three of the top-five scored half-centuries. India used up their quota of 50 overs to score 259/4. In reply Sri Lanka finished on 145/8 in 50 overs, handing India a huge win.

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While batting, India lost an early wicket in the form of opener Mona Meshram but then teenagers Deepti Sharma and Devika Vaidya stitched a 123-run partnership for the second wicket. In the process, Deepti scored 54 off 96 deliveries while Player of the Match Devika was a little quicker than her with a 103-ball 89 that had 11 boundaries in it.

India’s innings however turned on its head after captain Mithali Raj came to bat at the fall of Deepti’s wicket. Scoring at a rate of over 100, Mithali was unbeaten on 70 that came off just 62 balls and included eight boundaries. This was Mithali’s 41st ODI fifty. Quick contributions from Harmanpreet Kaur (20 off 21 balls) and Veda Krishnamurthy (10 off 6 balls) helped Mithali guide India to an imposing total.

Sri Lanka started cautious but once opener Eshani Lokusuriyage was dismissed by left-arm spinner Ekta Bisht, while the team was on 42 in the 12th over, they started losing the plot.

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India continued to chip away at the Sri Lanka batting and even though they couldn’t dismiss them, the visitors ensured the hosts couldn’t recover from the blows. Sri Lanka finished on 145/8 with Hasini Perera (34) and Chamari Athapaththu (30) getting good scores. Bisht took 2/27, off-spinner Sharma took 1/12 and slow-left spinner took 2/19.

“It’s always good to start with a win,” said Raj after the win. “We’d started slowly in the match but Devika and Deepti put up a useful partnership to help increase the run rate. It was a good pitch to bat on and we enjoyed batting out there.”

India, who have two points by virtue of Monday’s win, face Thailand at the same venue on Wednesday.