Friday night’s Alright for Mumbai Indians with a thrilling entry into the WPL finale against U.P. Warriorz

Photo by: Deepak Malik / SPORTZPICS for WPL

Mumbai: Mumbai Indians advanced to the final with a 72-run thrashing of UP Warriorz in the Eliminator on Friday in Navi Mumbai thanks to the first hat-trick of the Women’s Premier League by Isabelle Wong (4/15) and Nat Sciver-blistering Brunt’s 38-ball 72.

On Sunday at the Brabourne Stadium, the first WPL final will be contested between the two best teams, Delhi Capitals and Mumbai Indians, who held the top two slots in the points standings with 12 points apiece.

A formidable 183-run goal was set, and Mumbai Indians quickly destroyed the UP Warriorz’s tenacious top and middle orders. Wong’s outstanding hat-trick in the 13th over helped her team win the match.

Alyssa Healy (11) and an on-song Kiran Navgire (43), both of whom were threatening, were removed early by Wong. She then cleaned up Simran Sheikh (0) and Sophie Ecclestone (0), taking one wicket apiece on the second, third, and fourth deliveries of her third over to record a match-winning effort.

In 17.4 overs, UP Warriorz were dismissed for only 110 runs.

In what turned out to be a one-sided match, only Navgire made an effort for UP Warrioz, scoring an exciting 27-ball 43 that included four fours and three sixes. No other batters managed to pose a threat to the scorers.

Healy and Shweta Sehrawat (1), who were UP Warriorz’s openers, were both out in the first three overs, giving them a terrible start.

In contrast to Saika Ishaque’s (2.4-1-24-2) second over, which included the wicket of Sehrawat, Wong’s third over resulted in Healy being caught by her opponent Harmanpreet Kaur at mid-off.

Mumbai delivered the UP Warriorz another another devastating blow when Tahlia McGrath, one of the team’s top batsmen, was run out in the fifth over while attempting to grab a single from a crowded off-side pitch.

With their backs to the wall with two fours and a six off Ishaque, Navgire launched an assault on Mumbai. Grace Harris also scored a four. UP Warriorz scored 20 runs in the sixth over, bringing their total to 46/3 at the conclusion of the powerplay.

As Navgire attempted to clear the ropes again off Amelia Kerr, with Hayley Matthews (1/13) spilling a legitimate opportunity, Navgire also received a lifeline.

The fourth-wicket partnership between Navgire and Harris, which had lasted 35 runs, was finally broken in the eighth over when Sciver-Brunt took her maiden wicket, having the latter caught by Wong for 14. UP Warriorz were 63/4 after the first half.

After that, Navgire hit Kerr for two sixes, and Deepti Sharma (16) added a four for a total of 19 runs from the 12th over, but Mumbai Indians quickly ended their stand.

Navgire lost his wicket after hitting one straight to deep midwicket off Wong after scoring 43 runs quickly. After a strike to eliminate Sheikh, the English bowler had Ecclestone cut a ball on to her wickets to complete her hat-trick.

Earlier in the first innings, Mumbai Indians’ scintillating undefeated score of 72 helped them reach an intimidating total.

Sciver-Brunt pounded down nine fours and two sixes to register an undefeated 72 with the bat. She also made the most of an early lifeline when she was on six thanks to Sophie Ecclestone’s (2/39) error in dropping a catch off Rajeshwari Gayakwad at mid-off.

With the exception of Sciver-Brunt, who appeared unstoppable, UP Warriorz maintained control of the first half of the elimination match mostly via their spin spinners, preventing Mumbai hitters from escaping or amassing any significant individual totals.

Together with Kerr (29 off 19 balls, 5x4s), the right-handed Sciver-Brunt gave the Mumbai Indians some much-needed momentum late in the game. Together, they added 60 runs for the fourth wicket.

Mumbai Indians amassed 78 runs from overs 5 through 15 then hammered 66 runs in the final five overs to reach a challenging total.

Yastika Bhatia (21), Matthews (26), and Kaur (14) all received starts, but UP Warriorz maintained dominance for the most of the game despite an uneven start.

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