She is unarguably the biggest and the greatest batswoman to have ever represented India in any format of the game – Mithali Raj is a legend which barely needs any introduction. The veteran batter once again came to the party as she contributed in India’s another dominant victory in the ongoing ICC Women’s World T20 over minnows Ireland in a group stage encounter on Thursday. During her 51-run knock, Mithali added another feather to her already studded cap as she becomes the highest T20I run-getter for India in the shortest format.
With this, the 35-year old Mithali (2283) has gone ahead of the likes of – Rohit Sharma (2207), Virat Kohli (2102), Harmanpreet Kaur (1827), Suresh Raina (1605) and legendary MS Dhoni (1487).
Raj struck an assured 51 as India posted a total of 145 for six that was always likely to be too strong for Ireland, and the tournament’s lowest-ranked team struggled to 93 for eight in reply as spinner Radha Yadav finished with 3/25. Courtesy this win, the Indian eves have booked their place in the semifinals of the Women’s World T20 for the first time since 2010.
Promoted to open the batting, veteran Mithali (51 off 56 balls) added 67 runs in 10 overs with Smriti Mandhana (33, 29 balls) but the innings never gained required momentum on a track that remained a bit damp due to overnight showers.
The decision to bring in Jemimah Rodrigues at No 3, didn’t quite work out well as Mithali never got going despite hitting four boundaries and a six.
Other records Mithali broke during her knock – –
Most 50-plus scores in a calendar year in Women’s T20Is:
7 – Mithali Raj, 2018*
6 – Suzie Bates, 2018
6 – Alyssa Healy, 2018
17th T20I Half Century
7th In The Year 2018
Most Half Centuries By Any Woman In T20Is in 2018
Most Runs Scored By Any Indian In 2018 (Men & Women combined)
Having effectively scored 22 off five deliveries, Mithali scored another 21 off 51 balls. Her failure to rotate the strike did affect the momentum once Mandhana was bowled by medium pacer Kim Garth, trying a wild slog. She hit four boundaries and a six.
Young Rodrigues hit three fours in his 11-ball-18 but was stumped off Laura Delany’s wide delivery when she tried to give charge.
Skipper Harmanpreet hit a six but was soon dismissed. As wickets fell at one end, Mithali couldn’t shift gears at the other end. She was finally out in the 19th over, deceived by a slower delivery from Garth but India’s chances of putting up a substantial total had gone up in smoke by then.