Sun, 24 Sep 2023

Dhaka [Bangalesh], July 16 (ANI): A four-wicket haul by debutant Amanjot Kaur went in vain as Marufa Akter and Rabeya Khan's fiery bowling helped Bangladesh clinch their first victory against India in women's ODIs as the hosts registered a 40 runs victory against visitors in the rain-curtailed in the opening game of the three-match series here at Shere Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur on Sunday.

Marufa Akter and Rabeya Khan were the stars for Bangladesh in the first ODI, taking four and three wickets hauls respectively in a stunning spell of bowling. With the win Bangladesh took a 1-0 lead in the 3-match ODI series.

India was plagued by Bangladeshi spinners in the T20Is, but in the first ODI, a fiery spell by pacer Marufa Akter proved to be too much for India, who were bowled out for 113 and lost by 40 runs.

Marufa concluded with four wickets in her first ODI in Bangladesh, including two with the new ball and two in quick succession in the middle overs. With explosive speed and movement, she astounded India, breaking the back of the chase and recording her best stats in international cricket. The chase was subsequently derailed by three middle-order wickets from legspinner Rabeya Khan.

Chasing a revised target of 154 because of rain during Bangladesh's innings, India opener Smriti Mandhana gave Women in Blue a strong start by hitting Marufa for two straight fours past midwicket in consecutive overs. However, the wicketkeeper Nigar Sultana made a full-stretch dive to catch Mandhana as the fast bowler quickly grabbed one.

Priya Punia took 27 balls to reach her 10 runs before flicking one off Marufa to mid-on, where Murshida Khatun raced in and made a diving catch.

Nigar Sultana continued to rotate the spinners from the other end as Marufa picked up the tempo at one end to keep the pressure on India. India was at 37 for 3 after ten overs when left-arm spinner Nahida Akter trapped Harmanpreet Kaur lbw with a ball for just five after she was sliced through backward point for four. Soon, Yastika Bhatia was bowled by Rabeya, who then captured Jemimah Rodrigues. When Rodrigues was a little early into the draw and skied a catch to mid-on, the surface's slowness became a factor.

Then, Deepti Sharma and Amanjot boosted India's prospects. The pair had formed what ultimately proved to be a match-winning relationship on Amanjot's T20I debut, in which she was named Player of the Match. On Sunday, the pair appeared to be rotating strikes and having an easy day. For their 30-run partnership, they needed 71 balls, with Amanjot successfully utilising the sweep and flick to offset the low bounce.

Sultana, however, recalled Marufa, who promptly made the delivery. Amanjot attempted to slice a full ball but was called out for being caught behind. She had a discussion with the on-field umpire as she made her way back. India was reduced from 91 for 5 to 91 for 8 when Marufa first knocked out Sneh Rana with an dipping full ball and Deepti dragged an approximate short ball from Rabeya to midwicket.

Bangladesh merely tightened the screws thereon to fire B Anusha and Pooja Vastrakar, who received a controversial caught-behind verdict, and to announce the celebration that might last all night in Mirpur.

Earlier, a disciplined bowling effort by Indian women, which saw debutant Amanjot Kaur shine with a four-wicket haul, helped the visitors restrict Bangladesh to just 152 runs in the first ODI of three-match series at Mirpur on Sunday. Women in Blue needs 153 runs to go one-nil up in the series.

Brief Scores: Bangladesh: 152 (Nigar Sultana 39, Fargana Hoque 27; Amanjot Kaur (4-31) vs India 113 (Deepti Sharma 20, Yastika Bhatia 15; Marufa Akter 4-29). (ANI)

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