CWG 2022: India beat Barbados to enter women’s cricket semifinals | Commonwealth Games 2022 News – Times of India

Powered by another sensational bowling show (4-10 in 4 overs) by seamer Renuka Singh Thakur and a crucial half-century (56 not out, 46b, 6×4, 1×6) by Jemimah Rodrigues, India cruised into the semifinals of the of the women’s competition of the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games in style, thrashing Barbados by 100 runs in the last, must-win Group A clash at Edgbaston on Wednesday night.
Looking like serious contenders for a medal-their defeat to Australia in the opener notwithstanding, India, who scored 162-4 and then restricted Barbados to 62-8, recorded their second-biggest win in T20Is. They will now face the winner of the night game on Thursday between England and New Zealand in Group B, in the semifinals on Saturday. Apart from India, Australia were expectedly the other team to make it to the last four stage from Group A.

The only worry ahead of the knockouts for India is an injury in the right hand to Rodrigues during the game, which saw the 21-year-old sitting in the dugout towards the closing stages of the match. She was seen putting an ice pack, and then bandage on her hand, and even shook the players’ hands with her left hand. With a couple of days before the semis clash, India would hope that their key batter recovers from this blow in time.
While quite a few players have done well for them in the league stage, the superstar of India’s campaign so far as has been Renuka, who, with nine scalps in three games at an incredible average of 5.33 and economy rate of 4.00, including two four-fors, is the top wicket-taker in the tournament by a fair margin.


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While she took 4-18 against the Southern Stars in a losing cause, Renuka, moving the ball around menacingly under the lights, this time destroyed the Barbados top-order, sending back Deandra Dottin (0), skipper Hayley Matthews (9), Kycia Knight (3) and Aaliyah Alleyne (0) to leave the Caribbean side tottering at 19 for four in 5 overs. Playing the last time on the international stage, Dottin lost her leg stump while trying to smash a ball over mid-off. Mathews couldn’t clear Shafali Verma at mid-on, Knight was castled while trying to paddle a ball to fine leg, while Allaeyne misjudged a leave to lose her off-stump to a beautiful inswinger.
Swinging the ball in and out, Thakur has been a headache for batters in Edgbaston and will be India’s biggest trump card in the knockouts. Most heartening for the Indian women’s cricket team is the fact that the 26-year-old from Himachal seems to have filled the void of a quality pacer that was there once the legendary Jhulan Goswami quit T20 cricket.


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Earlier, put in to bat by Barbados, India- having lost Shafali Verma (43, 26b, 7×4, 1×6), skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (0) and Taniya Bhatia (6) within a space of 16 runs -were delicately placed at 92 for four in 13 overs, before Rodrigues and off-spinning allrounder Deepti Sharma (34 not out, 28b, 2×4, 1×6) changed the course of the innings with their magnificent 70-run fifth wicket alliance, which took just 42 balls.
Showing off why she’s such a force to reckon with in England, Rodrigues slammed her seventh T20I fifty, with Deepti providing her ideal support to help India put up a formidable 162 for four in 20 overs. With the duo going berserk, India plundered 58 runs off the last five overs, as Rodrigues hit a four off the last ball off Alleyne.


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Rodrigues, who averages 50 in T20s in England, had scored 249 runs in seven games, including an unbeaten 92, for Northern Superchargers in The Hundred last year. The 21-year-old Mumbaikar was dropped from the ODI World Cup squad last year due to poor form, but came to the party at the perfect time for India, scoring her first T20I half-century in 21 innings.
After being put in by Barbados, India suffered an early blow when the in-form Smriti Mandhana (5) was out lbw in just the second over, but a typically belligerent knock by Shafali, and the opener’s 71-run stand for the second wicket in just 46 balls with Rodrigues gave their innings momentum. A horrible mix-up ended Shafali’s stay at the wicket, and things became worse when Harmanpreet was out for a ‘golden duck’ but Rodrigues and Deepti then joined forces for a match-winning stand.
In another big boost for India, allrounder Pooja Vastrakar returned to the XI after missing the first two games due to Covid. India also left out ‘keeper Yastika Bhatia, replacing her with Taniya Bhatia instead.

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