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Women's T20 WC Qualifiers: Sri Lanka confirm Group A semifinal spot, Netherlands push for top finish in Group B

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Women's T20 WC Qualifiers: Sri Lanka confirm Group A semifinal spot, Netherlands push for top finish in Group B

Women's T20 WC Qualifiers: Sri Lanka confirm Group A semifinal spot, Netherlands push for top finish in Group B

Abu Dhabi, May 1 (Ajit Weekly News) Tournament favourites, Sri Lanka, confirmed their ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier Group A semifinal spot with a dominant 67-run victory over Uganda at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium on Wednesday.

Opener Vishmi Gunaratne’s career-best knock of 73, which got her player of the match award, and the Sri Lankan spinners were the stars for the table-toppers from Group A in their win over Uganda, which continues their unbeaten streak in the tournament with three wins out of three games.

On the other hand, the Netherlands dashed Zimbabwe’s hopes of semifinal contention, with a hard-fought 14-run win at Tolerance Oval. Netherlands produced a solid, all-round performance with captain Babette de Leede, leading from the front and producing a player-of-the-match-winning performance with the bat in their crucial Group B encounter, which kept their semi-final hopes alive, while ending Zimbabwe’s chances.

At the Zayed Cricket Stadium, Sri Lanka’s opening stand began with a bang for Sri Lanka as Chamari Athapaththu and Vishmi completed their fifty-run partnership from 45 balls. It was brought to a screeching halt by Janet Mbabazi who removed Chamari for 24 off 21 balls.

Harshitha Madavi was run out shortly afterwards, but Vishmi found support from Hasini Perera, who came in at number four. Vishmi completed her half-century from 51 deliveries, with Hasini being the aggressor at the other end. The latter was eventually dismissed for 30 off 24 balls in the 18th over.

Vishmi finished on an unbeaten 73 off 64 balls, her highest score in T20Is, leading Sri Lanka to a formidable 154/4 in 20 overs. In the defence, Sri Lanka were all over Uganda in no time, reducing them to 22/2 inside the Powerplay.

Inoka Ranaweera stepped into the attack immediately after the Powerplay and struck twice in two deliveries, while left-arm wrist spinner, Shashini Gimhani also took a wicket in her first over, leaving Uganda were 35-5 inside ten overs.

Prosscovia Alako resisted Sri Lanka’s charge but scarcely found support from the other end as wickets kept tumbling. She made 36 in 32 balls and was the seventh batter dismissed. Kavisha Dilhari saw off the last two wickets from successive deliveries in the final over and Uganda were bundled out for 87, handing Sri Lanka a satisfactory victory.

Coming to the game at the Tolerance Oval, opting to bat first, Netherlands lost key batter Iris Zwilling early to a direct hit at the non-striker’s end by Pellagia Mujaji, but Sterre Kalis and de Leede rebuilt with a watchful stand.

The partnership began slowly as Netherlands ambled to 29 in the first six overs. Kalis opened up with back-to-back fours off Josephine Nkomo and looked in ominous touch. Sharne Mayers was brought into the attack in the 13th over and struck off her first delivery, cleaning up Babette for 37 to break the stand.

Francis Chipare doubled it up with the wicket of Sterre two overs later, trapping her in front for 34 off 37 balls. Netherlands added 42 runs in the last five overs with Robine Rijke leading the charge. She remained unbeaten on 39 off 25 balls to give the innings the late push it badly needed.

In reply, Modester Mupachikwa led Zimbabwe’s fight at the top but Netherlands struck at the other end, sending back three batters inside the Powerplay. Frederique Overdijk, Silver Siegers and Iris took a wicket apiece as Zimbabwe were reduced to 29/3. Caroline de Lange added another scalp to the tally after the Powerplay, sending Ashley Ndiraya back to the hut.

Josephine and Modester resurrected the innings with a solid partnership but with Netherlands maintaining impeccable discipline with the ball, the runs were not coming as quickly as they would have wanted. Zimbabwe needed 52 in the last five overs to win, but could only manage 37 more and finished on 121/4, despite the duo’s unbeaten stand.

Brief Scores: Sri Lanka 154/4 in 20 overs (Vishmi Gunaratne 73 not out, Hasini Perera 30; Janet Mbabazi 1-19) beat Uganda 87 all out in 19.2 overs (Prosscovia Alako 36; Inoka Ranaweera 2-10, Shashini Gimhani 2-23, Kavisha Dilhari 2-27) by 67 runs

Netherlands 135/6 in 20 overs (Robin Rijke 39 not out, Babette De Leede 37, Sterre Kalis 34; Francisca Chipare 2-27) beat Zimbabwe 121/4 in 20 overs (Josephine Nkomo 39 not out, Modester Mupachikwa 39 not out; Caroline De Lange 1-17, Iris Zwilling 1-19) by 14 runs

–Ajit Weekly News

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News Credits – I A N S
#Women039s #T20 #Qualifiers #Sri #Lanka #confirm #Group #semifinal #spot #Netherlands #push #top #finish #Group

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