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India edge South Africa to triumph

Harmanpreet Kaur blasted a six in the penultimate delivery to power India to a one-wicket win over South Africa in a last-ball thriller at the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier Final at P Sara Oval here on Tuesday.

India edge South Africa to triumph
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India women celebrate the fall of a South African wicket

Colombo

Needing nine off six balls, Indian women were staring at defeat when they lost Poonam Yadav (7) in the first delivery but Harmanpreet plundered Letsoalo over deep midwicket to bring India back on the chase and sealed the win with a couple of runs in the last ball of the over. 

Chasing 245 to win, Opener Mona Meshram (59) and Deepti Sharma (71) were the star players for India as they added 122-run innings for the first wicket to lay the foundation for the run chase. 

Earlier, Rajeshwari Gayakwad (3/51) claimed three wickets in her nine overs, while S Pandey took two wickets to help India bowl out South Africa for 244 in 49.4 overs. 

M du Preez (40) was the top-scorer for South Africa women, while van Niekerk (37) and L Lee (37) got starts but failed to consolidate into big scores. 

Already assured of a place in this year’s Women’s World Cup, India continued their invincible run at the tournament after overhauling the target in the last over. 

In reply to South Africa’s 244, India lost opener Thirush Kamini (10) early in the eighth over but Meshram and Sharma stitched a 122-run innings for the first wicket to help India recover. In the end, it was Harmanpreet’s heroics that helped India seal the issue. 

Brief scores: South Africa 244 in 49.4 overs (M du Preez 40, D van Niekerk 37, L Lee 37, R Gayakwad 3/51, S Pandey 2/41) lost to India 245/9 in 50 overs (D Sharma 71, M Meshram 59, Harmanpreet Kaur 41*, Veda Krishnamurthy 31, M Kapp 2/36)

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