India v Pakistan, Women's World T20, Delhi March 19, 2016

Pakistan edge thriller by two runs in rainy end

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Pakistan 77 for 6 (Ameen 26, Gayakwad 1-11) beat India 96 for 7 (Krishnamurthy 24, Amin 1-9, Iqbal 1-13) by two runs (D/L method)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Sidra Ameen's run-a-ball 26 eventually swung a tight contest Pakistan's way © ICC/Getty

Pakistan Women nearly saw victory slip away as they made a mess of a straightforward chase of 97 against India Women, but good deeds upfront with the bat and a torrential downpour in Delhi helped them escape with a two-run win on the Duckworth-Lewis method. The players went off the field with Pakistan precariously placed at 77 for 6 in 16 overs, and gusty winds that brought with it a storm subsided India's hopes of a heist as their Women's World T20 campaign received a body blow.

Pakistan were cruising high and happy at 44 for 1 in eight overs courtesy Sidra Ameen's fiery start, before Rajeshwari Gayakwad and Harmanpreet Kaur picked up two wickets to revive the hosts. A shaky middle order then survived a lively Jhulan Goswami burst, but only just. However, they kept receiving generous offerings from time to time courtesy India's spinners as Pakistan ate into the target.

The match truly sprung to life when Iram Javed's ferocious flat-batted slap was superbly taken by a diving Mithali Raj at cover as Pakistan slipped to 71 for 4, still needing 27 off 34 balls. While Pakistan's inability to work the singles forced them to bring out the big hits, India's eagerness to close out the contest resulted in a few mishaps.

Sushma Verma, the wicketkeeper, missed a run-out and a stumping in the space of three deliveries, before sending back Sana Mir, the Pakistan captain, for a duck with a direct hit to give India sniff; Pakistan were in shaky waters at 77 for 6. There was a major sign of turbulence and a crash landing seemed inevitable as India's hopes soared. But it was all too brief as rains put paid their hopes of clinching a come-from-behind win.

The unlikely win looked a distant possibility when India dug themselves into a pit they could not quite get out of. Some excellent captaincy by Mir, backed by some accurate spin bowling on a slow Kotla deck by Anam Amin, the left-arm spinner, allowed Pakistan to strangulate India. They bowled as many as 30 dots in the first six overs as India appeared to have been stuck in quick sand as they limped to 7 for 2.

Mithali Raj struggled for timing, but hung around. Strangely enough, her lack of purpose allowed Pakistan to weave a web even as her deputy Kaur struggled to get bat to ball. Mir and Sadia Yousuf built on Anam's good work to ensure India's most accomplished pair had to force the pace and use their brute force to clear the ropes. One such effort resulted in Raj holing out off a full toss to deep midwicket, while Kaur found the long-off fielder.

That India inched close to 100 was thanks to a late turbocharge by Veda Krishnamurthy, who hit three fours, in her 19-ball 24, while Jhulan Goswami and Shikha Pandey muscled 24 between them to give India hope. However, that Pakistan hit nine boundaries in their first 12 overs, much before the rain arrived, in comparison to India's six in 20 overs, eventually proved to be the clincher.

Shashank Kishore is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Desihungama on March 22, 2016, 4:30 GMT

    The Pakistani women team is only getting better and I don't find the result surprising as many people are suggesting on the forum. True the rain intervened but these cricketers have all the abilities to score quickly and hit big sixes. We recently saw them performing against the mighty West Indian side and coming so close to victory. They could have chased the target as well. However, in a true spirit of a Pakistani fan we only want to see our teams play good cricket and give their best. Win or lose do not matter.

  • KSidd on March 20, 2016, 21:24 GMT

    Well played Greens...hope men would have learnt something from your win

  • Oldtimer01 on March 20, 2016, 11:42 GMT

    The pakistani women are on top. Time to enjoy.

  • Cricobserver101 on March 20, 2016, 8:50 GMT

    The Pakistani women have done the nation proud with their victory over India. It was a really entertaining game full of tension, excitement and pressure. Congratulations ladies you have done what the men have never been able to do twice!

  • Ammo666 on March 20, 2016, 7:15 GMT

    @SANATKUMAR MISHRA: i meant it was NOT really luck played here as due to rain they couldn't win by playing remaning 24 balls having 4 wickets in hand. Giving credit to the fair winning team is called respect but not by saying as asual bad luck IND or lucky PAK or whoever...

  • tarun_scb on March 20, 2016, 5:37 GMT

    You can't score 7 runs in 5 overs in the power play and expect to win.Horrible innings from Mithali Raj.This is not the first time she has played such innings. She should send Smriti Mandana in place of her to open.She is a far more aggressive batsman.

  • collinrm on March 20, 2016, 5:28 GMT

    We could have added a new new page to the history of the Indian cricket, if only the ladies have won their match against the Pakistani ladies. Men have scrambled to defeat their rivals in a game of high voltage. India could have between the ladies if not for the intervention of the rain gods. However, let us congratulate the Pakistanis both men and women for their brave fight. It is the India tradition to praise and reward the enemy for bravery. Let us hope that they carry our hospitality to Pakistan and hope Afraidi to maintain his stance on Indian love after landing in Pakistan. I wish them well.

  • SchoolGirlCricketCaptain on March 20, 2016, 4:42 GMT

    Congratulations, Pakistan. You held your nerves better and won. Honestly, I didn't expect the result to be what it eventually turned out as the Indian Women have a superior team overall. But the better team on the day won.

    Come on, India Girls! Forget this loss and move on. Don't be nervy in games to come.

  • Reno_Rangan on March 20, 2016, 3:43 GMT

    I call it a PAPER WIN. If the game was played till the last ball, either way result would have been considered natural, this kind of win comes from a paper work. Because in sports a game can change a time any way. Who knows Pak eves would have hit 3 consecutive sixes in the next 3 ball and won the game or Indian girls would have take hattrick wickets and won it. I only blame the adopted system called D/L method, shared points would have been better than this nonsense.

  • CricketPakistan on March 20, 2016, 3:41 GMT

    Well done girls. You have defeated a team which is a lot better than your team on paper. Congratulations

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