Harman Power: The Records Kaur Broke in Her WT20 Special vs NZ
The 2018 ICC Women’s World T20 is off to a flier. And the woman sparking it into life on the opening day is someone who knows a thing or to about stepping up at a big event.
Less than 16 months after her sensational 171* to take India into the final of the 2017 World Cup with victory over Australia, Harmanpreet Kaur lit up proceedings in Providence, Guyana with an astonishing effort in her team’s Group B opener against New Zealand.
In 93 matches, spanning more than 12 years, no Indian batter had crossed three figures in women’s T20 internationals. But the Indian skipper changed that with a wonder knock.
Harmanpreet’s 51-ball 103 was laced with eight maximums – another Indian record – and muscled India to 194/5. Five previous editions of the Women’s WT20, with 95 matches between them, hadn’t seen a higher innings total.
It was very nearly India’s best-ever effort in the shortest format, falling just four runs short of their highest total in T20Is. That this happened after a sedate start, which saw India at a precarious 41/3 at the end of the Powerplay overs, only adds to the spectacular quotient of what Harmanpreet and her team achieved.
While the skipper deservedly ran away with the adulation, and the headlines, she was aided in no small measure by teenager Jemimah Rodrigues. The 18-year-old, appearing in her maiden ICC tournament, initiated India’s recovery from the early jolts. Jemimah stroked a confident 59 off 45 balls, in the process becoming the youngest to hit a half century in Women’s WT20 history.
She may have ended up playing second fiddle, but Jemimah and Harmanpreet’s 134-run association – off just 12.4 overs – is now India’s highest partnership for any wicket in women’s T20Is.