England rally to clinch fourth World title

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LONDON (CMC) – Half-centuries from opener Poonam Raut and Harmanpreet Kaur were not enough as England Women defeated India Women by nine runs to win the 2017 ICC Women’s World Cup at historic Lord’s, London on Sunday.
Chasing 229 for victory in the final of the month-long showpiece, India got close before they were dismissed for 219 with eight balls remaining, as England captured their fourth world title and second in eight years.
“We knew we were in with a chance, we’ve done it the hard way in the tournament,” England captain Heather Knight said.
“Every game of cricket you’re battling; in this it was for the trophy, your teammates and your country. Cricket is a funny game, we knew that if we could keep it at five or six runs an over and held our nerve that we were in with a chance.
“I felt it was slipping away a little bit, we fought, so proud of the girls. It’s been a theme, us fighting hard and holding our nerve which we did today.”
Raut top-scored with 86 from 115 balls with four fours while Kaur chipped in with 51 from 80 balls and Veda Krishnamurthy, 35 from 34 balls.
New ball seamer Anya Shrubsole spearheaded England’s attack with six for 46 to land Man-of-the-Match honours while left-arm spinner Alex Hartley supported with two for 58.
India were seemingly en route to victory at 191 for three in the 43rd over only to suffer a dramatic collapse where seven wickets tumbled for 28 runs in the space of 35 deliveries.
Opener Smriti Mandhana (0) and captain Mithali Raj (17) both fell cheaply to leave India on 43 for two in the 13th over before Raut put on 95 for the third wicket with Kaur and a further 53 for the fourth with Krishnamurthy, to put the innings back on course.
England had earlier rallied to 228 for seven off their 50 overs behind Natalie Sciver’s top score of 51 and Sarah Taylor’s 45.
The hosts were 63 for three in the 17th over before Sciver and Taylor put on 83 to repair the innings. Sciver faced 68 deliveries and struck five fours while Taylor consumed 62 balls without finding the boundary.
They slumped to 164 for six in the 38th over but Katherine Brunt stroked 34 and Jenny Gunn, an unbeaten 25, to ensure England gathered a competitive total.
West Indies Women, finalists in the 2015 tournament, finished sixth after winning just two of their seven games in the preliminary round.

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