84 was required off the last 48 deliveries. Grace Harris had just walked in to bat, and UP Warriorz were staring at a defeat even with two of the cleanest hitters around in women’s cricket – Harris and Kiran Navgire. Kim Garth’s twin wicket over only made things worse, as Warriorz crashed further to 88/6.
And if there’s one thing that Gujarat Giants would have learnt from the clash, it is to never underestimate Harris. The big Australian batter showed why she is rated so highly in world cricket with a knock of a lifetime, with an able companion in the form of England’s Sophie Ecclestone.
With 53 off last 18 deliveries, the tie was still heavily in favour of the Giants but Harris never gave up, and continued chipping away with crucial boundaries, including three in the same over against Garth.
“I started poorly and I thought I was fluffing around. You need to get the conditions of the wicket and I was thankful that Sophie also motored along. Great feeling to finish over the line. I knew what I wanted to do. I was getting antsy when there were so many breaks in the DRS,” Harris said at the post-match presentation.
What transpired in the last two overs though was a defining feature of Harris’ skills. The right-hander smashed both her countrymates, Ashleigh Garner and Annabel Sutherland to take the Warriorz home in a clash that they had no business winning.
“I was able to compose myself, but I was psyched to get the batting and score. I love batting with freedom. The coach is supportive and tells me to be free. [On Ecclestone] She is a clean striker, and that is a part of how well I played at the end,” she added.
“When Sophie got a couple away, I just ran hard. It was good. [On DRS] There was a little bit of confusion when the umpire said the DRS was down. But no hassle, good fun. Drinks and burgers at the end of the day.”
Alyssa Healy, the captain of the Warriorz also credited Harris for the win, stating that there is no other way to describe the power-hitter apart from ‘Grace is Grace’.
“Full credit to Grace and our lower order in particular. Grace is Grace, that's the only way to describe her. She has shown the world what she can do. [On Navgire] Kiran was sensational. She ended up taking the opportunity and making a fifty,” Healy had to add.