India’s women team stormed into the semifinal of the ongoing ICC Women’s World Cup with a thumping 186-run win over New Zealand. Mithali Raj & Co. had begun their campaign in a perfect style by beating hosts England. They also won their next three games to prove their title credentials but two consecutive losses against South Africa and Australia threatened to derail their campaign.
However, led by their captain’s majestic 109-run knock, the Women in Blue thrashed New Zealand to enter the last four. Batting first, India had scored 265 for 7 in the allotted 50 overs before Rajeshwari Gayakwad’s sensational spell of 5 for 15 helped them to bundle out New Zealand for just 79.
Australia might have defeated India with utmost ease in the group stage but Australia all-rounder Ellyse Perry has insisted the defending champions would not take high-flying India lightly.
The reigning world champions rode on half-centuries from openers Nicole Bolton (79) and Beth Mooney (53) and Perry (55) to crush India by eight wickets. Punam Raut’s century and Mithali Raj’s 69-run knock had propelled India to 226 for 7 in the allotted 50 overs but Australia had chased down the total inside 46 overs.
However, given India’s dominant performance against New Zealand, Perry said the team from Down Under would face a different Indian side in the semifinal.
“Given that they’ve played well (against New Zealand) they’ll come in with a bit of momentum and I expect them to be really tough,” Perry said.
“They probably left a few things unattended against us, but I know they’re really dangerous. They’ve got a great couple of batters and dangerous bowlers. They’ll be really good.
“We maybe didn’t come up against them at their strongest on the day. I’m sure they’ll be really keen to rectify that. It’s a great test for us and we are really looking forward to it,” she added.