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Women’s T20 WCup: India hits 42 in 3 overs to beat Pakistan

India smashed 42 runs in three overs to come through a stern test and beat fierce rival Pakistan by seven wickets at the Women’s T20 World Cup on Sunday.

Jemimah Rodrigues led India home at Newlands with 53 not out off 38 balls, and drove a four through the covers off the last delivery of the 19th over to go to her half-century and seal the victory.

Richa Ghosh helped with 31 not out from 20 balls as India won its opening game with the help of two of its best youngsters. Rodrigues is 22 years old and Ghosh is just 19 and played at the last World Cup at the age of 16, AP reports.

The Indians needed 41 off the last four overs at a required run rate of more than 10 an over and nerves were jangling. In the end, they needed only three of the last four overs to get to 151-3 and overhaul Pakistan’s 149-4.

It gave India a vital winning start at the World Cup, where there is little room for error. The top two teams in each of the two groups go straight through to the semifinals.

India moved second in Group 2 behind England.

“Every match is important, no matter the opponent, but obviously Pakistan is a big game,” said India captain Harmanpreet Kaur.

India is one of the contenders for the title. Top-ranked Australia, the defending champion, and No. 2 England won their opening games on Saturday.

Pakistan captain Bismah Maroof led from the front for her team with 68 not out. Her unbeaten partnership of 81 for the fifth wicket with Ayesha Naseem (43 not out) ensured Pakistan set a challenging total.

India was momentarily 109-4 when Ghosh was given out lbw for 9 when trying to sweep off the last ball of the 16th over. She reviewed the decision and replays showed the ball knicked off her glove before hitting her pad.

She made the most of her second chance, hitting three fours in a row in the 18th over as India surged toward the target.

Rodrigues matched that in the next over, finding the boundary three times and an unbroken stand of 58 by the two young stars took India to victory with an over to spare.

Sri Lanka improved to two wins from two games later Sunday thanks to a match-winning partnership of 104 by Harshitha Samarawickrama and Nilakshi de Silva that dug their team out of trouble against Bangladesh.

Bangladesh struggled to 126-8 batting first but Sri Lanka was 25-3 when seamer Marufa Akter took three wickets with her first eight deliveries without conceding a run.

Fighting back, Samarawickrama finished 69 not out with eight fours and a six and de Silva was 41 not out to take Sri Lanka to 129-3 in 18.2 overs and to the top of Group 1.

The partnership could have been broken 17 runs into it when an outside edge from de Silva went through the hands of Murshida Khatun as she dived forward to attempt the catch.