India women 169 for 9 (Raut 47, Sandhu 4-26) beat Pakistan women 74 (Nahida 23, Bisht 5-18) by 95 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
Just like she did less than five months ago in the World Cup Qualifier, Ekta Bisht bagged another five-for against Pakistan. This one outdid an impressive effort from the Pakistani bowlers and fielders in Derby. Bisht's opening spell of 4-1-4-3 set up India's 95-run win that helped maintain a clean slate - 10-0 - as far as head-to-head goes. This was also India's third straight win in the World Cup over Pakistan.
The day belonged to left-arm spinners. Nashra Sandhu gave Pakistan a golden chance of notching up their first win of the tournament by taking four wickets to restrict India to 169 for 9. However, Bisht struck with her fourth ball and added two more into her kitty within the space of four balls to bring Pakistan down to 14 for 4 in the eighth over.
It was not the turn but her angle and drift from around the wicket that trapped three batsmen lbw early on. She deceived them with flight and beat their inside edge to pin Ayesha Zafar for 1, and soon Sidra Nawaz and Iram Javed for ducks. Meanwhile, Jhulan Goswami struck Javeria Khan's front pad right in front in the fifth over, and without the injured Bismah Maroof, getting the chase back on track was very unlikely for Pakistan.
Even when Bisht was taken off the attack, Deepti Sharma's turn and Mansi Joshi's lines did not offer Pakistan any respite. In the 14th over, Deepti turned a delivery a long way from outside off and it went through the gap to knock over Nain Abidi's off stump to leave Pakistan on 24 for 5.
Opener Nahida Khan, who was dropped by Deepti at gully on 0, was the only one to score in double digits before captain Sana Mir did the same later on. With the pressure of wickets and lack of scoring opportunities, Nahida also fell when she tried to cut Harmanpreet Kaur off the back foot and edged it to the keeper.
Bisht came back for her second spell to dismiss Sandhu and Diana Baig off consecutive deliveries at the score of 51 before Mir resisted with the tail but could only reduce the margin of loss as she was the last wicket to fall for a valiant 29 off 73 balls.
India could not capitalise initially on their decision to bat as opening bowlers Asmavia Iqbal and Baig swung the ball and bowled full lengths to curb the openers. An in-form Smriti Mandhana fell when Baig swung a full-length delivery into her to trap her lbw for 2. India's scoring rate suffered in Mandhana's absence as Punam Raut was watchful when Iqbal and Baig stuck to tight lines and bowled to their fields on the off side. The first four of the innings came in the ninth over when Deepti pulled Iqbal's rare short ball before Raut also opened up with consecutive fours in the 12th over.
Raut's stay ended when she tossed a catch back to Sandhu by flicking early, before the left-arm spinner dented India's middle order which had barely been exposed in the World Cup. Just when India were approaching 100, Sandhu, in her eighth straight over, struck with the help of two reviews within three deliveries. She first struck Mithali Raj in front and ball-tracking showed the ball would have hit leg stump. Two deliveries later, Deepti edged a delivery low to the keeper but the umpire Gregory Brathwaite failed to pick it, and a very confident Sidra Nawaz asked her captain to take the review again which put India in trouble at 94 for 4.
India would have then looked to Harmanpreet to give them a strong finish but another left-arm spinner - Sadia Yousuf - strangled the middle order by bowling wide of the crease with a more round-arm action compared to Sandhu's. Yousuf even induced an edge off Raj's bat, when the India captain was on 6, but got a wicket in her second spell when Harmanpreet pulled a short ball to midwicket where Mir dived full length to her left to complete a stunning catch. India were 107 for 5 with just over 15 overs left.
Once Mona Meshram missed a heave two overs later against Yousuf, India could have been wrapped up for under 150 but wicketkeeper Sushma Verma racked up her highest score with a quick 35-ball 33 in with the help of the tail and helped stretch the score to 169 which proved too much for Pakistan even though they batted when the sun had come out to make the conditions better.