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Along with the men's side, Indian Women have done exceedingly well on their New Zealand tour. They're coming into the T20I series on the back of a dominating victory in the ODI series which they won 2-1. The first T20I between the two sides will be played at Wellington on 6th February and both the sides will be looking to draw the first blood. India and New Zealand women last saw each other in a T20 game way back in November last year, in ICC Women's World Cup, where the Women in Blue defeated the Black Caps by a considerable margin of 34 runs. The Kiwis will be looking to avenge their defeat whereas the Indians will be looking to add on the fearless reputation they've built over the recent time.
After two one-sided defeats, the Kiwi women bounced back to redeem themselves in the three-match ODI series by winning the final match. The win was set-up by their bowlers as they restricted India to a below-par score which Kiwis chased by relative ease.
The win should instill a lot of confidence among New Zealand women prior to the upcoming T20I contest between the two sides. Lea Tahuhu and Anna Peterson proved their skipper's decision to bowl first right as they picked up seven wickets combined to dismiss India for a paltry total of 149. It was refreshing to see Kiwi bowlers picking some wickets as prior to the third game, they had picked only three wickets in two matches combined.
It was just a matter of staying at the crease for Kiwi women as far as chasing the target was concerned and Suzie Bates and Amy Satterthwaite did it to perfection. Bates scored her 25th ODI century and skipper Satterthwaite bettered her knock with 66-run innings consuming 74 deliveries. New Zealand eventually won the match comprehensively with eight wickets in hand and more than 20 overs to spare.
Suzie Bates, Sophie Devine, Caitlin Gurrey, Amy Satterthwaite, Katey Martin, Frances Mackay, Leigh Kasperek, Hannah Rowe, Amelia Kerr, Lea Tahuhu, Rosemary Mair.
Indian women would have wanted to finish the innings on a high before moving to the shortest version of the game, but it was not to be. Barring the partnership between Deepti Sharma and Harmanpreet Kaur, the Indian innings never looked like gathering momentum.
Such was the state of Indian innings that barring Deepti Sharma's knock of 52, no batswomen could get going. Smriti Mandhana and Jemimah Rodriques failed miserably after a couple of wonderful performances in the first two games. There wasn't many bowlers could have done in defense of such a low total. Poonam Yadav was the lone women to get any success, but she, too, was expensive in her five-over stint.
Considering the way Indian women have done in the recent games, their batting collapse could very well be termed as a one-off failure. Overall, they've done pretty well in recent times. They have a strong batting lineup with a nice amalgamation of experience and youth. However, they're prone to collapse as we saw it in ICC WT20 against England and in the last match, in case they lose early wickets. With power hitters available in the middle-order, India will be a force to reckon if they even get a reasonable start.
Smriti Mandhana, Priya Punia, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur, Dayalan Hemalatha, Deepti Sharma, Anuja Patil, Taniya Bhatia, Arundhati Reddy, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav.
It will be a fresh start for both the sides as they move from the fifty-over version to the shortest format of the game. The most recent encounter between the two teams in this format was way back in November last year where India triumphed Kiwis riding on Harmanpreet Kaur's brilliant century. Although New Zealand women handled Indian spinners decently in the third match, they did it when there was no scoreboard pressure. India appear to be a better-balanced unit and are coming into the match on the back of some excellent results behind them. Kiwis struggled to play spin in the first two games, something which is likely to be exploited by Indian bowlers. For the above-mentioned reasons, we think the Indian women are better-placed to emerge on top in the upcoming match.
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