India punish England to win by 35 runs in Women's World Cup encounter

England 'disappointed' not to clinch run chase that would have been second-highest in a women's one-day game

Saturday 24 June 2017 18:50
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England's Heather Knight is run out during the ICC Women's World Cup fixture at the County Ground, Derby
England's Heather Knight is run out during the ICC Women's World Cup fixture at the County Ground, Derby

England captain Heather Knight conceded her side were outplayed by India as they suffered a losing start to the Women's World Cup on Saturday.

India emerged victors by 35 runs at Derby after running up 281 for three to set England what would have been the second-highest successful run chase in women's one-day international history.

Fran Wilson's 81 and 46 from Knight kept England in contention but they fell short in the end, bowled out for 246.

Knight told Sky Sports 2: “I think it was a brilliant match, credit to India I think they outplayed us and they bowled very well and obviously took the game away from us with the bat.

“Really nice to have a good game of cricket but disappointing not to come away with the win.”

Four run-outs, including the key wickets of Wilson, Knight and Katherine Brunt (24), undermined England's run chase, but Knight felt it was their bowling at the start of India's innings which ultimately proved costly.

After losing the toss and being put into bat, India scored their sixth highest ODI total with top three Punam Raut (86), Smriti Mandhana (90) and captain Mithali Raj (71) doing the damage.

Knight admitted she felt the conditions would aid England more than they did initially, but felt the tournament hosts did not help themselves either.

She added: “We thought it would do a little more but to be honest I don't think we put it in the right areas.

“We didn't quite hit our line and lengths and India punished us for that. They batted very well and made it tricky for us to make the breakthrough and really put the pressure back on our bowlers.

“I think we bowled a little bit too short and let them get away to a good start. Having said that, I think we pulled it back quite well in the middle.”

England's hopes of a record-breaking victory looked to have disappeared when they slumped to 154 for five, but a sixth-wicket stand of 62 between Wilson and Brunt appeared to have turned things round.

Both players were run out in the space of 15 balls to ultimately end England's challenge, but while they were together Knight admitted she still had high hopes of an historic win.

She said: “Fran battled brilliantly, I'm really pleased for her, and definitely when her and Katherine were going we felt we were in a really good position.

“I think it was 80 off the last 10, which is similar to what India got, but shame it didn't quite work out how we wanted it to in the end.”

India skipper Raj, whose 71 was her seventh successive ODI half-century, hailed Raut and Mandhana after they put on 144 for the first wicket: “It's important to get a start like this and it was a brilliant partnership by the openers.”

PA

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