ICC Women's World Cup 2017: Skipper Mithali Raj leads India to 35-run win over England
Combined efforts helped India beat England by 35 runs in the opening match of the ICC Women's cricket World Cup here on Saturday.
Chasing 282, England were bowled out for 246 in the 47.3 overs with Deepti Sharma and Shikha Pandey scalping three and two wickets each.
For England, middle-order batswoman Fran Wilson top scored with 81 runs off 75 balls and Heather Knight contributed 46 runs. Apart from them no other batswoman stepped up to the occasion.
Earlier, put in to bat, the Indian eves started off with openers Punam Raut (86) and Smriti Mandhana (90) putting up a 144-run stand in 27 overs. But just when the going seemed good, Mandhana was sent packing by off-spinner Heather Knight. Mandhana, who slammed 11 boundaries and two sixes, was caught at midwicket by Danielle Hazell.
An unperturbed Raut continued the attack with new batswoman and skipper Mithali Raj (71), and forged a 78-run partnership in 16 overs. But while trying to up the ante, Raut was caught at deep midwicket by Danielle Wyatt off Hazell. Raut's 134 ball knock was laced with seven boundaries and one six.
With the scoreboard reading 222/2 in 42.3 overs, Raj and Harmanpreet Kaur (24 not out) played sensibly and added 59 runs to post a challenging total. Raj, however, was dismissed by Knight in the last ball of the final over.
For England, Knight scalped two wickets for 41 runs.
In the other match, New Zealand defeated Sri Lanka by nine wickets in Bristol.
Sri Lanka posted 188/9 in their allotted 50 overs with Chamari Atapattu (53) scoring handsomely for the cause.
Chasing 189, Suzie Bates (106 not out) and Amy Satterthwaite (78 not out) produced some fine innings to overhaul the target in 38th over.