India scripted history on Sunday, January 30, as they handed England a seven-wicket defeat in the final of the ICC Women’s U19 T20 World Cup 2023. The Indian skipper, Shafali Verma won the toss here in Potchefstroom’s Senwes Park and asked the English side to bat first.
Chasing their maiden ICC trophy in women’s cricket, Verma’s girls got off to a scintillating start as Titas Sadhu and Archana Devi scalped two wickets apiece inside the first seven overs. Parshavi Chopra then joined the act to add two wickets to her name as well, as Grace Scrivens’ lionesses found themselves with their backs to the wall.
A 24-ball 19 from Ryana Macdonald-Gay, who was dropped on 0 by Richa Ghosh, did well England cross the 50-run mark, but they still were miles away from what could have been considered a respectable total.
All of India’s six bowlers were amongst wickets, with Sadhu, Devi and Chopra being the stars of the lot. Barring the trio, Mannat Kashyap, Sonam Yadav and skipper Verma were also along wickets.
Tiwari and Trisha Star in Run Chase
Verma, who turned 19 on Saturday, 28 January, began the chase by flicking a down-leg delivery from Hannah Baker through fine leg for four, before lofting Sophia Smale over long-off for a humongous six in the next over. But in a bid to go big off Hannah in the third over, she mistimed the chip and gave a low catch to mid-on.
Shweta Sehrawat got her first four by driving on an overpitched delivery off Grace Scrivens in the fourth over. But on the very next ball, she tried to work through the on-side, but the turn in from Grace took the top edge to short fine leg, departing for five.
Two wickets in quick succession did provide England with a glimmer of hope, but unfortunately for them, it was nothing more than a glimmer as Soumya Tiwari and Gongadi Trisha steadied India’s ship.
Both scored 24 runs each, but whilst the former remained unbeaten, the latter was dismissed in the 13th over.
BCCI Announce Rs 5 Crore Reward
Following the youngsters' incredible achievement, BCCI announced a reward of Rs 5 crores.
The board secretary, Jay Shah wrote on Twitter "Women’s Cricket in India is on the upswing and the World Cup triumph has taken the stature of women’s cricket several notches higher. I am delighted to announce INR 5 crore for the entire team and support staff as prize money. This is surely a path-breaking year."