Grace Harris’ sensational unbeaten 59 (26b, 7×4, 3×6) and Sophie Ecclestone’s cameo (22 not out, 12b, 1×4, 1×6) propelled UP Warriorz to a stunning three-wicket win over Gujarat Giants at the D.Y. Patil Stadium on Sunday.
Chasing a target of 170, Warriorz looked down and out when they were reduced to 105 for seven in the 16th over. Then came the Harris-Ecclestone show that snatched victory from the jaws of defeat.
No. 3 Kiran Navgire (53, 43b, 5×4, 2×6) had provided the initial push for Warriorz.
Earlier, Giants rode on Harleen Deol’s knock (46, 32b, 7×4) to post 169 for six. With captain Beth Mooney ruled out of the game due to a knee injury, Sneh Rana led the Giants and opted to bat after winning the toss. The decision proved effective initially as the team brought up 30 runs in three overs, before a Deepti Sharma yorker cleaned up Sophia Dunkley.
Momentum broken, S. Meghana followed suit in the next over as she was caught by Shweta Sehrawat at short third off a Sophie Ecclestone delivery. And with Deepti and Ecclestone tightening the noose, the Giants middle-order struggled with just 50 runs on the board in seven overs and wickets tumbled at regular intervals.
At a time when crossing the 100-run mark looked difficult, Deol and Ashleigh Gardner (25, 19b, 2×4, 1×6) forged a crucial 44-run partnership to launch a fightback. Though the two dealt in singles and twos, they ensured that the scoreboard was ticking.
Deepti struck again in the 16th over, dismissing Gardener. Harleen then went on the attack. , hammering four consecutive boundaries off Devika Vaidya. But the India international fell four runs short of her maiden half-century in the tournament after she failed to clear the mid-wicket off an Anjali Sarvani delivery and was caught by Tahlia McGrath.
D. Hemalatha’s 13-ball 21 took Giants to what looked like a competitive total but Harris and Ecclestone had other ideas.