Mumbai Indian become WPL 2023 champions
After a remarkable performance from the bowlers, Nat Sciver-Brunt played a match-winning knock to guide Mumbai Indians to a historical victory
Harmanpreet Kaur became the first captain to win the Women’s Premier League (WPL) title as Mumbai Indians thrashed Delhi Capitals by 7 wickets in the grand finale at the Brabourne Stadium on Sunday. After a remarkable performance from the bowlers, Nat Sciver-Brunt played a match-winning knock to guide MI to a historical victory.
Chasing a lowly 132, Mumbai Indians suffered an early blow with Radha Yadav removing Yastika Bhatia in the second over. The left-arm spinner bowled a full toss, drawing the MI stumper out of her crease to heave it over mid-wicket. But Bhatia ended up getting caught by Alice Capsey and walked back after scoring just 4 off 3 deliveries.
A couple of over later, Jess Jonassen dismissed Hayley Matthews and gave another reason for Delhi Capitals to cheer for. Uncapped Arundhati Reddy pulled off a brilliant diving catch at mid-on, giving hope to her side.
After losing the openers, the onus of the chase fell on the shoulders of captain Kaur who scored a valuable 37 off 39 balls, before getting run out in the 17th over. MI needed 37 runs off 24 deliveries and Harman’s run-out brought back the memories of last month’s Women’s T20 World Cup final in which Team India suffered a heart-wrenching loss after the skipper’s run-out.
But it was Mumbai’s day and a victory was destined. After featuring in a 72-run partnership for the third wicket, Nat Sciver-Brunt notched up his second consecutive fifty in the tournament and scripted MI’s triumph. She returned unbeaten on 60 off 55 balls while Amelia Kerr scored 14 not out off just 8 deliveries.
Earlier, Shikha Pandey and Radha Yadav shared a 52-run partnership for the 10th wicket to lift Delhi to a competitive 131 for nine against Mumbai Indians. DC were off to a rocky start, collapsing from 74 for 3 in the 11th over to 79 for 9 after 16, thanks to devastating show from overseas bowlers Hayley Matthews (4-2-5-3), Isabelle Wong (4-0-42-3) and Amelia Kerr (4-0-18-2).
However, the 52-run stand between Shikha (27 not out from 17 balls) and Radha Yadav (27 not out from 12 balls) took them across the 100-mark and gave them a fighting chance.
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Matthews, Wong and Kerr had shared a total of eight wickets between them to put Mumbai in a strong position.
While the Caribbean all-rounder Matthews took her wickets tally to 16 — highest in the tournament alongside UP Warriorz’ Sophie Ecclestone — Wong and Kerr also finished at 15 wickets each. Saika Ishaque failed to get any breakthrough and ended up with an impressive 15 wickets too.
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