Pune : West Indian all-rounder Deandra Dottin’s impressive performance with both bat and ball powered Supernovas to the 2022 Women’s T20 Challenge title with a four-run win over Velocity in a thrilling final at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, here on Saturday.It was the third title for Harmanpreet Kaur led Supernovas, who had earlier won the first two editions of the tournament in 2018 and 2019 before losing to Trailblazers in the final in 2020. The tournament was not held last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.Dottin’s attacking fifty (62 off 44) guided Supernovas to 165-7 in 20 overs after being put in to bat. With the ball, she took two wickets for 28 runs in her four overs to play a crucial role in restricting Velocity to 161 for eight.Chasing a target of 166 runs for victory, Shafali Verma and Yastika Bhatia got Velocity off to a brisk start in the chase. However, Shafali had to depart for an 8-ball 15 in the third over bowled by Dottin.
Bhatia scored a boundary off Ecclestone but she handed a catch back to the bowler soon after. Kiran Navgire, who played a match-winning knock in her last game, couldn’t do anything as she was bowled by Ecclestone for a 13-ball duck.After a couple of quiet overs, South African batter Laura Wolvaardt eased the pressure a bit by scoring two boundaries off Vastrakar in the ninth over. But Chantham was out lbw in the same over and by the time the 11th was completed, Velocity had lost half their side with their captain Deepti also making it back to the hut in King’s first over.Velocity went without a boundary for 22 deliveries before Rana played a sweep off King for a four in the 13th over. But Velocity were still playing catch-up, with as many as 91 required off the last seven overs.Wolvaardt and Rana tried to keep up, scoring some much-needed boundaries, but Alana King bagged the wickets of both Rana and Radha in the same over while Dottin picked up her second by sending Kate Cross (13 off 7) back after being hit for two fours, to further dent Velocity’s chances.
However, Wolvaardt (65 not out off 40) and Simran Bahadur (20 not out off 10) struck a six apiece off King in the 18th over, which brought the equation to 34 off the last two overs.Vastrakar, who bowled the penultimate over, gave 17 runs as Wolvaardt and Simran hit crucial boundaries. Velocity needed 17 runs from the final over but left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone (2/28), the No. 1 ranked T20I and ODI bowler, conceded just 12 runs to win the match despite Wolvaardt hitting a six off the first ball.Earlier, Dottin stitched 73 runs for the opening wicket with Priya Punia (28) and added 58 for the second wicket with in-form captain Harmanpreet Kaur (43 off 29 balls).Despite Dottin getting out to Deepti, bowled by the Velocity captain, the Supernovas were well-placed to finish in the vicinity of 180, having reached 131/2 at the end of the 15th over.But a collective bowling effort by the opposition bowlers in the last five overs dented their innings and Supernovas finished with 165-7 on the board.Captain Deepti Sharma, Kate Cross and Simran Bahadur took two wickets apiece, while Ayabonga Khaka got one for Velocity.
Brief scores: Supernovas 165/7 in 20 overs (Deandra Dottin 62, Harmanpreet Kaur 43; Deepti Sharma 2-20, Kate Cross 2-29) beat Velocity 161/8 in 20 overs (Laura Wolvaardt 65 not out, Simran Bahadur 20 not out; Alana King 3-32, Sophie Ecclestone 2-28, Deandra Dottin 2-28) by 4 runs.
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