India have kept their Women’s Cricket World Cup 2022 semi-final hopes alive with a comfortable 110-run victory over Bangladesh in Hamilton.
Yastika Bhatia’s half-century was the standout knock in India’s 7-229, though Ritu Moni’s 3-37 – including two in two balls – gave Bangladesh a glimmer of hope.
But Sneh Rana (4-30) and Rajeshwari Gayakwad (1-15 from 10 overs) left the Tigresses in a spin and they never recovered from a slow start despite the best efforts of Salma Khatun, who made a brisk 32, to be all out for 119.
Mithali Raj opted to bat upon winning the toss and India made a strong start, Smriti Mandhana getting the scoreboard moving with back-to-back boundaries to conclude the second over.
Her opening partner Shafali Verma went one better in the ninth, striking Nahida Akter for what would turn out to be the only six of the innings over long-on, and three boundaries in the following over saw India end the powerplay well set on 0-52.
Bangladesh got their first wicket when Mandhana picked out Fargana Hoque at square leg to fall for 30 and end the opening partnership on 74.
One became three in the blink of an eye, Moni accounting for Verma and Raj in consecutive deliveries in the next over as a jubilant Bangladesh checked India’s momentum.
Bhatia and Harmanpreet Kaur were tasked with the rebuilding job and the pair proceeded cautiously before Kaur was dismissed for 14 courtesy of a direct hit from Fargana at mid-on.
Bhatia brought up a patient 79-ball half-century but fell to the next delivery, leaving India 6-176, but useful late cameos from Pooja Vastrakar (30 not out) and Rana (27 from 23) pushed them above 200.
Bangladesh in return were 2-19 at the 10-over mark and never really recovered to mount any challenge.