CricketMeghana, Rodrigues’ sublime fifties guide Trailerblazers beat Velocity by 16 runs
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Meghana, Rodrigues’ sublime fifties guide Trailerblazers beat Velocity by 16 runs

Trailblazers sealed a victory in the third match of the My 11 Circle Women’s T20 Challenge 2022 after beating Velocity by 16 runs on Thursday at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium in Pune.

S Meghana and Jemimah Rodrigues excelled with the bat as the Trailblazers registered a 16-run victory, but a better Net Run Rate ensured Team Velocity’s progress to the finals.

Chasing 191 for victory, Velocity openers – Shafali Verma and Yatika Bhatia got the side to a great start and Velocity were 32/0 after 3 overs.

Velocity however lost both the openers inside the powerplay. While Salma Khatun rattled the stumps to dismiss Bhatia, Shafali Verma was trapped LBW by Rajeshwari Gayakwad.

New batter KP Navgire announced her arrival with two giant sixes and Velocity were placed at 68-2 at the end of the powerplay.

Laura Wolvaardt carried her form from the previous game and stitched a vital fifty-run partnership with Navgire by playing second fiddle. The hundred was up for Velocity in the 10th over before Wolvaardt was caught behind off Poonam Yadav’s bowling.

Skipper Deepti Sharma was the next batter to depart after Smriti Mandhana grabbed a sharp catch at short mid-wicket off Gayakwad’s bowling.

Navgire at the other end, smacked consecutive sixes and reached her half-century in style. Velocity were 143/4 at the end of 15 overs before Renuka Singh dismissed Sneh Rana as skipper Smriti Mandhana grabbed her second catch of the innings.

Velocity lost two more wickets in quick succession. While Sophia Dunkley put an end to Navgire’s superb 69-run knock, a direct-hit from Jemimah Rodrigues dismissed Radha Yadav in the 18th over.

Hayley Matthews rattled the stumps of Simran Bahadur to claim her first wicket. Poonam Yadav successfully defended 24 runs in the final over as Trailblazers won by 16 runs but Trailblazers stormed to the finals after finishing with a better Net Run Rate.

Earlier, Trailblazers were put in to bat first by Velocity. Sabbhineni Meghana, who opened the innings for trailblazers, started confidently with two fours in the first over.

However, skipper Smriti Mandhana was dismissed early in the innings after Kate Cross scalped her first wicket. Velocity moved to 47/1 at the end of the powerplay after Jemimah Rodrigues started positively with the bat and joined Meghana at the crease.

Meghana continued the aggressive intent and smacked the first six off the innings, facing Radha Yadav’s bowling. The fifty partnership was up for the second wicket as both Meghana and Rodrigues maintained positive intent with the bat.

Meghana reached her half-century off 32 deliveries and Trailblazers were going strong at the 10-over mark with 86-1 on board. Rodrigues supported Meghana perfectly from the other end and reached her fifty in the 14th over as the hundred partnership was up for the second wicket.

Sneh Rana put an end to the huge stand after Meghana was caught at long-off by Kate Cross. Rodrigues did not let the momentum slip away by maintaining the striking rate after the Trailblazers batter was dropped twice.

New batter Hayley Matthews struck consecutive fours but Rodrigues was finally caught off Ayabonga Khakha’s bowling in the 17th over.

Trailblazers were 168-3 before Matthews and Sophia Dunkley provided an excellent finishing touch. While both batters were dismissed in the final over off Simran Bahadur’s bowling, Trailblazers posted a competitive total of 190/4 in the first innings.

Brief ScoresTrailblazers 190/5 (S Meghana 73, Jemimah Rodrigues 66; Simran Bahadur 2-31) beat Velocity 174/9 (K P Navgire 69, Shafali Verma 29; Poonam Yadav 2-33) by 16 runs.