Sri Lanka women clinch Twenty20 series against India

Shashikala Siriwardene played a captain’s knock to help Sri Lanka Women win the Twenty20 International series against India Women, with a six-wicket win in the third and final match on Tuesday (January 28).

Siriwardene, just 17 days shy of her 29th birthday, made an unbeaten 46 off 42 balls at the ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam as Sri Lanka took only 18.5 overs to chase down India’s 117 for 8. Having won the first T20I, Sri Lanka wrapped up its India tour on a happy note.

India elected to bat first, but none of the batters except for Poonam Raut and Jhulan Goswami could get going.

India’s faced problems very early in its innings, losing four wickets within the first four overs. Udeshika Prabodhani trapped VR Vanitha leg before off the third ball of the match, and then Eshani Kaushalya bowled Smriti Mandhana. Harmanpreet Kaur, leading the side in the absence of Mithali Raj, became Prabodhani’s second wicket and Karuna Jain was run out on debut.

Ekta Bisht made 15 before Maduri Samuddika sent Bisht and Amita Sharma back in a space of seven runs.

Raut, who was India’s highest scorer with 38, found support in Goswami. The pair added 37 runs for the seventh wicket before Raut fell to Siriwardene. Soniya Dabir was run out, but Goswami, who made 37 in an unbeaten 26-ball cameo, ensured India was not bowled out.

In Sri Lanka’s reply, Yasoda Mendis was caught behind in the second over and Chamari Atapattu was lbw to Ekta Bisht in the first ball after the Power Play overs. Soon after that, Rasangika was run out to leave the team 44 for 3 in the ninth over, before Sirwardene played the lead role in steadying the chase.

Siriwardene, whose knock consisted of four fours and a six, and Chamari Polgampola consolidated the innings with a 45-run stand. When Polgampola was run out Sri Lanka needed 28 runs in 22 balls. If India had any hope of making a comeback, it was quashed by Kaushalya, who hit three sixes to seal the deal.

Scores in brief:

At the ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium, Visakhapatnam

India Women 117 for 8, 20 overs (Poonam Raut 38, Jhulan Goswami 37 not out; Udeshika Prabodhani 2-20, Maduri Samuddika 2-18)

Sri Lanka Women 121 for 4, 18.5 overs (Deepika Rasangika 21, Shashikala Siriwardene 46 not out, Eshani Kaushalya 24 not out; Ekta Bisht 2-22)

Result: Sri Lanka Women won by six wickets.