Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana seal T20I series win for India against Bangladesh | Crickit
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Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana seal T20I series win for India against Bangladesh

By, Chandigarh
May 02, 2024 08:15 PM IST

India women chased down 118 with seven wickets in hand to take an unassailable 3-0 lead with two games remaining.

The opening combination of Smriti Mandhana and Shafali Verma has had an integral role in many of India's recent victories. That was the case on Thursday too as Mandhana and Verma shared a 91-run opening stand to lead India to a seven-wicket victory over Bangladesh in the third T20I in Sylhet, helping the visitors claim an unassailable 3-0 lead with two matches left.

Smriti Mandhana (L) and Shafali Varma(Getty)
Smriti Mandhana (L) and Shafali Varma(Getty)

After India's bowlers restricted Bangladesh to 117/8, Mandhana and Verma made short work of the target with a fluent partnership. Verma was the more dominant partner as expected, scoring 51 off just 38 balls with eight fours. Mandhana contributed a 42-ball 47 that included five fours and a six.

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With the Women's T20 World Cup scheduled to be held in Bangladesh in September, Mandhana and Verma's runs at the top of the order should hold India in good stead. They complement each other well as a result of being a left-right combination, compelling bowlers to constantly adjust their lines. On Thursday, they took advantage of the field restrictions and helped India race to 59/0 in the first six overs. The early flow of boundaries included Shafali hitting three successive fours against Nahida Akter in the sixth over.

By the time that Mandhana and Verma were dismissed in quick succession, the result was all but sealed. Harmanpreet Kaur and Richa Ghosh were the unbeaten batters who completed the formalities.

India's bowlers also stepped up. Despite Dilara Akter setting a solid foundation for the hosts with a 27-ball 39, they were never able to really put the Indians under pressure in the field. Left-arm spinner Radha Yadav was typically economical, conceding just 22 runs in her four overs while also claiming the wickets of Bangladesh skipper Nigar Sultana and Shorifa Khatun. Renuka Singh, Pooja Vastrakar and Shreyanka Patil finished with a wicket apiece.

The next two T20Is will also be held in Sylhet on May 6 and 9.

Brief scores: Bangladesh 117/8 in 20 overs (Dilara Akter 39, Nigar Sultana 28; Radha Yadav 2/22) India 121/3 in 18.3 overs (Shafali Verma 51, Smriti Mandhana 47; Ritu Moni 1/10). India won by 7 wickets.

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