Harmanpreet Kaur’s Quickfire 65 Powers Mumbai Indians to 207/5 vs Gujarat Giants

Last Updated: March 04, 2023, 22:06 IST

WPL 2023: Mumbai Indians' Harmanpreet Kaur and Amelia Kerr (BCCI)

WPL 2023: Mumbai Indians’ Harmanpreet Kaur and Amelia Kerr (BCCI)

Harmanpreet Kaur, along with Amelia Kerr and Hayley Matthews, propelled Mumbai Indians to 2017/5 from their 20 overs

Harmanpreet Kaur led the way with a scintillating 30-ball 65 as Mumbai Indians scored an imposing 207 for five against Gujarat Giants in the first-ever match of the Women’s Premier League in Mumbai on Saturday.

Sent into bat by rival captain Beth Mooney, MI were off to a flying start despite losing Yastika Bhatia in the third over.

WPL 2023: GG v MI – LIVE

Kaur, who was bought by Mumbai Indians for 18 million rupees ($220,000), struck 14 fours in the 30-ball innings in front of a packed house that opened to cheers from thousands of fans and a star-studded musical performance by Bollywood actors.

Opener Hayley Matthews from the West Indies smashed four sixes and three fours to score 47 off 31 balls to kickstart the campaign after Gujarat Giants led by Australian Beth Mooney won the toss and elected to field.

The WPL generated hundreds of millions of dollars even before the first ball was bowled and found a boisterous support base in the cricket-mad nation in what experts have billed a game-changing moment for women’s sport.

Bollywood stars Kiara Advani and Kriti Sanon opened the new league in front of a jubilant crowd that nearly packed out a 55,000-capacity stadium in India’s business hub Mumbai.

New Zealander Amelia Kerr remained unbeaten at 45 off 24 balls, with six fours and one six in the opening match of the tournament christened on the lines of cash-rich Indian Premier league.

Gujarat Giants spinner Sneh Rana picked up two crucial wickets for 43, including Kaur’s, with Georgia Wareham, Tanuja Kanwar and Ashleigh Gardner bagging one each.

“It was a really good wicket, the ball is coming on well and you can play some good cricket shots. It was one of those days when everything came out well. We wanted to get above 160-180, so happy with the score, time for the bowlers to go out there and do the job. Not really (when asked if there was any dew), we have some good plans as a spinner, need to be accurate and keep the run-rate going up,” Hayley Mathews told the broadcasters at the innings break.

Brief scores:

Mumbai Indians: 207/5 in 20 overs (Harmanpreet Kaur 65, Hayley Matthews 47, Amelia Kerr 45 not out; Sneh Rana 2/43).

(With inputs from Agencies

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