Mithali Raj going strong after 22 years, scores 72

Mithali Raj

Bristol, June 27 : Indian women’s team captain Mithali Raj on Sunday scored 72 (off 108 balls), a day after she became only the second international cricketer after Sachin Tendulkar to complete 22 years in One Day International (ODI) cricket.

Mithali’s knock helped Indian women overcome early losses and post 201 for eight in 50 overs in the the first ODI against England women here on Sunday.

After England had won the toss and elected to bowl, Indian women lost dashing openers Shafali Verma and Smriti Mandhana early. India were 27 for two in the 10th over. Mithali stitched a 56-run partnership with Punam Raut (32 off 61 balls) for third wicket and a 65-run partnership with Deepti Sharma (30 off 46 balls) for the fifth wicket.

Harmanpreet Kaur could make only one.

For England women, pacers Katherine Brunt and Anya Shrubsole took two wickets each while left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone was the most successful bowler with three wickets for 40 runs.

Brief scores: Indian women 201/8 in 50 overs (M Raj 72, P Raut 32, D Sharma 30, S Ecclestone 3/40, A Shrubsole 2/33, K Brunt 2/35)

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