AGENCIES, Sydney: Poonam Yadav’s brilliant leg-spin bowling performance crushed the morale of defending champions Australia in the opening match of Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 at the Showground Stadium in Sydney on Friday.
By the end of the day’s proceedings, India defeated Australia by 17 runs to leave the hosts’ Twenty20 World Cup title defence hanging by a thread. Australia was banking on Alyssa Healy’s return to form which proved to be otherwise.
It was a great day for the Indian team, who in front of a record Australian crowd of 13,432 for the standalone women’s match, saw the home team lost 4 wickets for 15 runs midway through their innings to slump to the shock defeat on Friday.
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) February 21, 2020
Australia had a target of 133 runs for victory and they were at a comfortable pace at 67 runs for 2 wickets. Things changed drastically when legspinner Poonam Yadav rammed through the defending champions with a record haul of 4 wickets for 19 runs. The host team could score just 114 runs.
The home team loss leaves the tournament favourites in a weak position and to recoup they will have to win their last three group games against Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and New Zealand.
In terms of strategies, they will need to bank upon on net run-rate to qualify for the finals if they win all three, depending on other results.