Dhaka, July 22 India and Bangladesh will be sharing the women’s ODI series trophy after the decider match ended in a thrilling and dramatic tie at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium on Saturday, with the series scoreline ending at 1-1.
Opener Fargana Hoque scored 107, her first ODI hundred, and also became the first centurion from Bangladesh in women’s 50-over international cricket. Her effort, along with Shamima Sultana’s 52, helped Bangladesh post a respectable 225 for 4 on a spin-friendly pitch.
In reply, knocks of 77 and 59 from Harleen Deol and Smriti Mandhana respectively kept India in the hunt for winning the match and series. But from 191 for four in the 42nd over, India dramatically lost their next six wickets for just 34 runs, including two in the 48th over, to be all out for 225 in 49.3 overs.
With no Super Over held due to the paucity of time, India and Bangladesh will be sharing the ODI series trophy. In the chase, Smriti was given an early reprieve when captain Nigar Sultana dropped a catch in the second over. But India lost Shafali Verma (4) and Yastika Bhatia (5) in the first five overs.
Shafali, brought in place of Priya Punia, was dismissed by Marufa Akter, who caught off her own bowling, while Yastika was trapped lbw by Sultana Khatun. Harleen arrived and began to collect boundaries through the square region on the off-side while Smriti brought out her strong pull shot to keep the scoreboard moving. Harleen was proficient in her slog-sweep and used the pace of the ball to take boundaries from the off-spinners.
After both Smriti and Harleen got their fifties, the latter brought up the century of the partnership by steering Marufa through third man for four. The 107-run stand was finally broken when Smriti uppishly cut to point off Fahima Khatun in the 29th over.
The match was embroidered in a huge controversy when captain Harmanpreet Kaur went for a sweep off Nahida Akter in the 34th over. But Harmanpreet missed the delivery and the ball seemingly went to slip off the pads. On Nahida’s appeal, the umpire raised the finger, leaving Harmanpreet furious.
In anger, she hit the stumps with her bat and exchanged a few angry words with the umpire before walking towards the pavilion. On the way, she showed a thumbs up to the crowd when she reached the boundary ropes.
Shortly after this, Harleen’s best ODI knock came to an end with a run-out, followed by Deepti Sharma falling in the same over in a similar fashion. That triggered an Indian batting collapse as Amanjot Kaur was trapped lbw, and Sneh Rana and Devika Vaidya were caught and bowled off Nahida.
Meghna Singh’s four in the 49th over yielding six runs brought the equation to three runs needed off the last over. It came down to one run needed in the last three balls when Meghan was caught behind off Marufa, leaving Jemimah unbeaten on 33 off 45 balls as Bangladesh completed a stunning comeback to leave the match and series tied.
In the morning, Bangladesh didn’t lose any wickets in the first ten overs as Shamima and Fargana joined forces to keep the Indian bowlers at bay. The duo would share a 93-run stand for the opening wicket before Sneh had Shamima miscue to mid-off to depart for 52.
Shamima’s fall led to Fargana stepping up to be the aggressor and she began to hit boundaries while adding 71 runs off 85 balls for the second wicket with Nigar, who became Sneh’s second scalp of the day, followed by Ritu Moni being dismissed in quick succession.
Fargana marched forward to hit two boundaries from overs 45-47 and got her landmark century by driving down the ground off Shafali, before being run out on the last ball of Bangladesh’s innings. By then, the hosts’ were past 200, which eventually turned out to be good enough to force a tie.
Brief scores: Bangladesh 225/4 in 40 overs (Fargana Hoque 107, Shamima Sultana 52, Sneh Rana 2-45) tied with India 225 all out in 49.3 overs (Harleen Deol 77, Smriti Mandhana 59; Nahida Akter 3-37, Marufa Akter 2-55)