Women’s Test: India in total control as their batting reigns supreme on Day 2

Mumbai: India were in total control of the one-off Test match as they were leading Australia at stumps by 157 runs on Day 2 at Wankhede Stadium here on Friday.

India could end the day on a high note by putting up an excellent batting performance as four of their batswomen notched up four half-centuries and brought about two-century stands.

India were 376/7 in reply to Australia’s first innings score of 219.

Smriti Mandhana calmly reached her third Test fifty along with Sneh Rana, but not before they were troubled by Ashleigh Gardner.

Ultimately Garderner tasted the first blood of the day when she rattled Rana’s furniture. India soon lost yet another wicket, courtesy of a mixup between Richa Ghosh and Mandana, costing India the opener’s runout for 74.

Ghosh forged a partnership with Jemimah to bring India back on track and went into the lunch break without losing further wickets with just 57 runs deficit to strike off.

The stand bloomed post-lunch and soon the duo reached their fifties and saw India taking the lead.

Kim Garth broke the 113-run partnership after Ghosh miscued a short ball, and Harmanpreet Kaur was trapped leg-before of Gardener’s grubber.

The offie also trapped Yastika Bhatia in front and forced Jemimah to hit straight to Annabel Sutherland at covers for 73.

India lost 4 more wickets inside 9 overs for 14 runs with the lead barely over 50.

As Australia hoped to bundle out India within a 100-run lead, Deepti Sharma and Pooja Vastrakar put their shoulders down post-tea and launched an attack after the Aussies were tired.

Deepti notched up her fourth consecutive Test fifty and moved to 70, and Vastrakar’s dogged determination ensured India did not lose any wickets in the final session.

The pair added 102 runs at stumps and on a pitch expected to open up in the next two days with Australia already carrying the burden of India’s big lead.

Brief scores: India Women 376/7 (Smriti Mandhana 74, Jemimah Rodrigues 73, Deepti Sharma 70*; Ashleigh Gardner 4-100) lead Australia Women 219 by 157 runs.

UNI

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