Shafali Verma Saves India From Slipping on Rainy 3rd Day
Having scored a cracking 96 in the first innings, Shafali Verma held India’s fort with a graceful 55* On Day 3.
Opener Shafali Verma on Friday once again led from the front with an aggressive rear-guard, unbeaten 55 as the Indian women's team ended the rain-affected third day of the one-off Test at 83/1 after host England asked them to follow on. No play was possible after tea due to rain.
Despite the effort of 17-year-old Shafali (68 balls, 11x4s), who blasted 96 in first innings, India still trail England by 82 runs. Deepti Sharma (18* off 66 balls, 2x4s), promoted to No. 3, was at the crease with her at the end of the penultimate day of the match.
India lost the wicket of Smriti Mandhana early in the second innings. The left-hander fell to pace bowler Katherine Brunt for a 13-ball eight.
However, Shafali, who has already hit 11 fours in her second innings, and Deepti have so far added an unbeaten 54 for the second wicket.
Earlier, left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone's four for 88 helped England women dismiss Indian women for 231 and take a sizeable 165-run lead.
India, who had got off to a strong start with a 167-run stand between Shafali (96) and Smriti Mandhana (78) in the first innings, lost track late on the second day as they conceded five wickets for 16 runs to finish the day at 187 for five.
The third day’s morning session did not bring any luck or resistance from India either as they lost both Harmanpreet Kaur and Taniya Bhatia without any addition to the scoreboard.
At 197/8 after the fall of Sneh Rana, it looked like India might even fall short of 200. However, Pooja Vastrakar and Deepti Sharma added 33 for the ninth wicket to spare a few blushes.
Skipper Heather Knight took two wickets for seven runs with her off-spin. Altogether, six of India's wickets fell to spin.
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