Harmanpreet Kaur produced one of the greatest ever ODI knocks in women’s cricket as India stormed into the ICC World Cup final, demolishing Australia by 36 runs in the semifinal, here today.
It is only the second time that India have entered the summit clash of the global event, having lost to Australia in the final of the 2005 edition.
Skipper Mithali Raj and senior pacer Jhulan Goswami were part of the Indian team which had lost then in Centurion.
What worked to Harmanpreet’s advantage was her experience of playing the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) for Sydney Thunders due to which her familiarity with the current Aussie attack was much more than any other player.
After a useful 60 against New Zealand in the virtual quarter-final, Harmanpreet upped the ante like never before.
She batted like as if there was no tomorrow as she repeatedly hit the troika of left-arm spinner Jess Jonasen (0/63 in 7 overs), off-break bowler Ashleigh Gardner (1/43 in 8 overs) and leg-spinner Kirsten Beans (1/49 in 8 overs) with utter disdain.
The ‘Women In Blue’ will meet hosts England in the final at the Lord’s on Sunday.
The Indian vice-captain smashed her way to a career-best magical 171 off 115 balls, leaving the Australian bowlers in a daze as India put up an imposing 281 for 4 after rain reduced the match to 42-overs a side.