On a high after two easy victories on the trot, including one against defending champion Australia, the Indian women’s cricket team will aim to inch closer to a semifinal berth when it takes on New Zealand in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup.
The Indians have hardly broke a sweat in their 17-run and 18-run wins over hosts Australia and Bangladesh in their previous two matches, and they are perched at the top of five-team Group A standings with four points from two matches. A win against New Zealand on Thursday will take the Harmanpreet Kaur-led side on the threshold of a knock-out stage spot, to be competed among top two teams from Group A and B. New Zealand, though, have a better head-to-head record against India in recent years, having won the last three matches between the two sides. Exactly a year back, they had beaten the Indian team 3-0 in a three-match T20 International home series. India will, however, remember their massive 34-run win against New Zealand in the previous edition of the T20 World Cup in 2018 in the West Indies.
Live Score Updates Between India Vs New Zealand ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, straight from Junction Oval, Melbourne
Lea Tahuhu bowls a yorker length delivery outside off stump, Smriti Mandhana fails to get right connection and ends up dismantling her own stumps. Mandhana (11 runs) departs after a positive start. India 17/1 in 2.2 overs.
Shafali Verma joins the party and crushes the ball on the off-side over the infield to finish the over with a boundary. IND 15/0 in 2.0 overs
FOUR! Smriti Mandhana pounces on a full-length delivery and lofts it over mid-on for her second boundary. IND 10/0 in 1.2 overs
FOUR! Smriti Mandhana clears front leg and plays the ball over covers for first boundary of the innings. IND 5/0 in 0.5 overs.
Shafali Verma opens the face of her bat to guide the ball towards third man and completes a single to get India off the mark.
Indian openers Shafali Verma and Smriti Mandhana walk out to bat, Lea Tahuhu to start the proceedings for New Zealand.
Players from both the sides are out in the middle for their respective national anthems.
Shafali Verma — India’s player to watch out for!
For India, teenage sensation Shafali Verma has made brilliant start to her first major tournament, with her fearless batting approach and will look to continue doing that and provide India with explosive starts.
Sophie Devine — New Zealand player to watch out for!
New Zealand skipper Sophie Devine has been in scintillating form for the Kiwis and would hope to continue with it for the remainder of the tournament. Here’s what teammate Lea Tahuhu said about her skipper in the pre-match press conference.
New Zealand Playing XI!
New Zealand have also made two changes to their side for this game.
New Zealand Women (Playing XI): Sophie Devine (capt), Rachel Priest (wk), Suzie Bates, Maddy Green, Katey Martin, Amelia Kerr, Hayley Jensen, Anna Peterson, Leigh Kasperek, Lea Tahuhu, Rosemary Mair
India make two change! Mandhana comes back in!
India have made two changes in their playing XI from the last game. Smriti Mandha, after recovering from viral fever, comes back in.
India Women playing XI: Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Taniya Bhatia (wk), Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur (capt), Deepti Sharma, Veda Krishnamurthy, Shikha Pandey, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad
New Zealand skipper Sophie Devine wins the toss and opt to bowl against India in Melbourne.
This is how the pitch looks like!
Since it’s the first match of this tournament at this venue, the pitch is unused. It has a fair bit of green grass cover and that is primarily to bind the surface together but at the same time since the conditions are overcast it’ll help the bowlers up front, hence it’ll be interesting to see what the skipper who wins the toss decides to do.
India not focusing on past results!
India have got the better of New Zealand on last two occasions when these side faced each other in the T20 World Cup but the Indian opener Smriti Mandhana, in her pre-match press conference, said that the team is not focusing on the past results.
“It’s not good to think about the past. Every tournament is a new beginning. We’ve been playing good cricket, and that’s a positive for us,” Mandhana said.
Harmanpreet Kaur — a fierce competitior!
Indian skipper Harmanpreet Kaur has impressed everyone with her captaincy and here is what her teammates had to say about their leader. However, she has failed with the bat in last two matches and would like to change that in today’s game.
A glimpse of the venue!
Melbourne’s Junction oval will be hosting its first match of the tournament, so the pitch will be fresh and something both teams will be looking to make most of.
Hello and welcome!
Hello and welcome to our live blog of Match 9 of ICC Women’s T20 World Cup between India and New Zealand from the Junction Oval, Melbourne.