England women 116 for 2 (Jones 53*, Sciver 52*) beat India women 112 (Mandhana 34, Rodrigues 26, Knight 3-9, Gordon 2-20, Ecclestone 2-22) by eight wickets
Antigua: England chased down the target in 17.1 overs and will now meet Australia in Sunday’s final.
After an unbeaten run in the group stage, Harmanpreet Kaur’s Indian women’s cricket team has been knocked out of the ICC Women’s World T20 following an 8 wicket loss to England in the semi-final on Friday morning.
India batted first and looked stable at 77/2 in 10 overs when Jemimah Rodrigues’ wicket triggered a batting collapse that ended in the team being bowled out for 112 in 19.3 overs.
Seven Indian batters failed to get into double figures even as the team’s senior-most player Mithali Raj watched on from the dressing room, left out of the playing XI.
England looked in control of the chase throughout as seasoned campaigners Amy Jones (53 no, 47 balls) and Natalie Sciver (52 off 40 balls) added 92 runs for an unbroken third-wicket stand to finish the match in only 17.1 overs.
This is India’s third big-stage loss in the last year after they lost the 50-over World Cup final to England at Lord’s last year and the Asia Cup T20 final to Bangladesh, earlier this year.
The bold decision to drop Mithali, the highest run-getter in shortest format, may haunt the Indian dressing room as coach Ramesh Powar and captain Harmanpreet Kaur will have a lot of answering to do in coming days.
On a track where the ball wasn't coming on to the bat, it was the Englishwomen, who came up trumps with left-arm spinners Kirstie Gordon (2/20 in 4 overs) and Sophie Ecclestone (2/22 in 3.2 overs) varying the pace of their deliveries.
Skipper Heather Knight's off-breaks also came in handy as she had the best figures of 3 for 9 in two overs as none of India's middle and lower-order batters could force the pace.
For India, once Smriti Mandhana (33, 24 balls), Jemimah Rodriguez (26 off 26 balls) and skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (16, 20 balls) were dismissed, no batter managed to step up with Deepti Sharma’s 7 off 10 the highest-score among the wickets to fall.
Poor game sense of not reading the pitch also played its part as most of the Indian batswomen charged at the deliveries rather than playing deep inside the crease.
That was the ploy that Jones and Sciver deployed while facing the Indian spin quartet, who were below average on the day.
At Guyana, it was a slow track where the ploy of taking pace off the deliveries worked for the likes of Poonam Yadav (0/29 in 4 overs), Deepti (1/24 in 4 overs) and Anuja Patil (0/27 in 3.1 overs).