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Smriti Mandhana shines but India lose to New Zealand

February 7, 2019

Smriti Mandhana made history after she scored 50 runs off 24 runs, the fastest by an Indian women, in the first T20 International against New Zealand at Wellington.

Opener Mandhana was dismissed by Amelia Kerr for 58 runs when India were 102 for two, with 58 runs left to reach the target. But India lost the T20I series-opener by 23 runs. Mandhana hit three boundaries and seven sixes in her entertaining 34-ball knock.

India chose to bowl and limited New Zealand to 159 for four in their allotted 20 overs. Arundhati Reddy, Radha Yadav, Deepti Sharma and Poonam Yadav took a wicket each for India.

Captain Harmanpreet Kaur blamed the loss on poor batting.

I think bowlers did really well as we expected. We didn't bat well in the last 10 overs. That is only area where we are always struggling. - Harmanpreet Kaur, Captain, Indian women's cricket team

Mandhana has played some amazing knocks India's spectacular 2-1 win over New Zealand in the ODI series. She scored her fourth ODI century and an unbeaten 90 in the first two matches to grab the top spot in the ICC ODI Rankings for Women's batters.

Compliments have come pouring in for Mandhana on Twitter. "Well played @mandana_smriti. Would like to see more from you in future. But the match should have been won as it was almost there. Better luck next time." said one fan.

The next game will be held in Auckland on Friday.

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