The fast-rising Jemimah Rodrigues starred with the bat after India’s spinners wreaked havoc to set up a series-clinching seven-wicket win over the West Indies in a low-scoring third women’s T20 International.
The spinners restricted West Indies to a paltry 59 for 9 in the stipulated 20 overs before Rodrigues played an unbeaten innings of 40 (51 balls) to take India home with 20 balls to spare and for the loss of just three wickets.
The triumph sealed India’s second consecutive T20 series win. They had beaten South Africa at home last month.
Spinners Radha Yadav (2/6), Deepti Sharma (2/12), Poonam Yadav (1/8) and Anuja Patil (1/13) were the architect of the win that reaffirmed India’s supremacy over West Indies, who have now lost six T20 Internationals on the trot.
Opting to bat, West Indies were off to a disastrous start as their top order, comprising Hayley Matthews (5), Stacy-Ann King (7) and Shemaine Campbelle (2), managed to put only 12 runs on the board in the first six overs.
Anuja drew first blood for India as she removed Matthews in the beginning of the third over. Campbelle and King soon followed.
Wicketkeeper Chedean Nation (11) and Natasha McLean (3) tried to resurrect the West Indies innings but the former was run out in the 13th over with the hosts reeling at 34 for 5.
Chinelle Henry (11) tried to fight back but the Indian bowlers kept striking at regular intervals to restrict the hosts to a paltry total.
In reply, the Indians also began on a shaky note.
Teenager Shafali Verma, who scored two-back-to-back half centuries before this game, was out for a duck while Smriti Mandhan (3) also departed cheaply.
It was not a happy outing for captain Harmanpreet Kaur (7) as well. However, Rodrigues hit a patient 40 to lead her side to victory.
The next match of the five-game series will be held on Sunday.
Brief scores: West Indies 59/9 in 20 overs (Chinelle Henry 11; Radha Yadav 2-6, Deepti Sharma 2-12) lost to India 60/3 in 16.4 overs (Jemimah Rodrigues 40 not out; Hayley Matthews 2-7) by 7 wickets