A clinical effort by the Indian spinners helped them to beat Bangladesh by 8 runs in a low-scoring thriller on Tuesday. Chasing a below-par score of 96, Bangladesh kept losing wickets regularly but its captain Nigar Sultana played a fighting knock of 38 to keep her side in the hunt. However, Shafali Verma bowled brilliantly to defend 9 runs in the final over, scalping four wickets and finishing it as a maiden over. With a thrilling win, Women in Blue have taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.
Batting first, Smriti Mandhana and Shafali gave India a decent start, scoring 33 runs in 4 overs. Nahida Akter initiated the collapse by bowling out Mandhana for 13. In the next over, Sultana Khatun struck twice to give India a huge blow and put them on the back foot. First, she removed the aggressive batter Shafali (19), and then the Indian skipper Harmanpreet Kaur for a golden duck.
Indian women kept losing wickets at regular intervals and none of them managed to cross the 20-run mark. Deepti Sharma (10) and Amanjot Kaur (14) contributed some useful toward the end and helped their side to reach 95/8 in 20 overs.
In reply, Bangladesh women got off to a shaky start as Minnu Mani and Deepti removed the openers inside three overs. Indian spinners read the pitch conditions well and bowled accordingly to take quick wickets. Indian bowlers never allowed their opponent batters to get into the game and score freely. Eventually, India won the game with ease. The third and final T20I will be played on July 13.