NEW DELHI, MARCH 19 : Rain ended a spirited fight-back by India to leave arch-rival Pakistan victorious by two runs on the Duckworth-Lewis method in a rain-hit Group B match of the ICC Women’s Twenty20 here on Saturday.
Pakistan, chasing India’s modest 96 for seven, suffered a dramatic collapse to slide to 77 for six in 16 overs when heavy rain ended the keen tussle between bat and ball at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground.
Pakistan had made a steady reply, reaching 48 for one in nine overs before the dismissal of Sidra Ameen for 26 turned the tide. Pakistan lost five wickets for 29 runs, three of them in the space of six runs, before bad weather left India ruing its own batting failure.
It was Pakistan’s first win from two Group B games, having lost a thriller to the West Indies by four runs in Chennai on Wednesday. India had defeated Bangladesh by 72 runs on Tuesday.
The ‘big match’ pressure appeared to tell on the Indian batters after they were sent in to bat by Pakistan captain Sana Mir.
The Indians managed just 34 runs by the 12th over for the loss of three wickets, including their skipper and star player Mithali Raj who made a scratchy 16 off 35 balls.
Veda Krishnamurthy lifted the total with a defiant 24, the only Indian batter to cross 20 in the face of steady bowling by Pakistan.
Five bowlers claimed a wicket each with player-of-the-match Anam Amin giving away just nine runs, Asmavia Iqbal 13 runs and Mir 14 in their quota of four overs each.
Mir said putting India under pressure from the start was the key to success for her team.
“We have played India a lot and know how well they bat, so it was important to apply pressure from the word go,” the Pakistan captain said.
“We succeeded in doing that. Also, since we have won and lost close games in the past, we realised it was also very important to field well. This is the way to go forward.”
Mir said the victory will boost the women’s game in Pakistan. “This will definitely have an impact because an India versus Pakistan match is watched a lot back home.”
Raj conceded poor batting let India down, but praised Pakistan’s effort in the field.
“The Pakistan bowlers were very disciplined and they were backed by good fielding,” the Indian captain said. “They put us under a lot of pressure.
“We must now win both our remaining matches against England and the West Indies and will be focused on that.”
India 96-7, 20 overs (Veda Krishnamurthy 24; Anam Amin 1-9, Asmavia Iqbal 1-13, Sana Mir 1-14).
Pakistan 77-6, 16 overs (Sidra Ameen 26; Jhulan Goswami 1-14).
Bangladesh v West Indies (3.30) Chennai.
Ireland v Sri Lanka (7.30 p.m) Mohali.