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If you happen to be an Royal Challengers Bangalore fan, whether it be Men’s Cricket or Women’s Cricket, luck always plays a hard game with you. The Women’s Premier League, a women’s franchise Twenty20 cricket league run by the Board of Control for Cricket in India, is currently in its inaugural season. For sponsorship purposes, it is also known as the TATA WPL 2023. (BCCI). This Season bought a ray of hope for Women’s Cricket as this was the first time all budding as well as other Indian Women Cricketers got to play Franchise Cricket on their home soil.
Franchise Cricket brings diverse advantages with it; The talent search of youth, more Cricketing opportunities for players and getting to play with superstars from all across the world are some of them. With the Women’s IPL gathering a huge fan base and Players from around the globe supporting this series, BCCI and fans can just hope for the glory of Women’s Cricket to reach the Zenith in the coming years.
Sophie Devine becomes the Orange Cap Holder
An all-rounder by all means, this New Zealand cricketer has represented her Nation in both Cricket and Hockey at International Levels. Devine at the Brabourne Stadium, on Saturday Night, played one of the greatest knocks of all time in the Women’s IPL. A knock that would be played on your TV screens for years to come and that would uplift a lot of Indian girls to pick up this sport.
An epitome of Power hitting, Devine had intentions to make her mark this time. With an opening partnership of 125 runs with the skipper Smriti Mandhana, Devine made the target of 188 looks minuscule from the very first over. After losing Smriti, Devine continued to shower the ground with some extraordinary strokes and took the score to 150 runs just in 11 overs. Unfortunately, her stupendous knock came to an end, just one run away from what could have been a well-deserved hundred: she slipped a catch in the hands of Ashwani Kumari at the mid-off on the delivery of Kim Garth.
With 9 fours and 8 sixes, and some well-built knocks by The England skipper Heather Knight and Ellyse Perry, RCB managed to bag their 2nd win of the Tournament with 8 wickets in hand and 4.3 overs to spare.
How has the Journey of Royal Challengers been so far?
It wouldn’t be appropriate to say that, similar to the history of Men’s IPL, Royal Challengers Bangalore seemed to have the Best Team in terms of the merit of the players at the start of the Tournament. With the Indian Batting Star Smriti Mandhana, England skipper Heather Knight, New Zealand All-rounder Sophie Devine, World’s Fastest Woman Bowler Ellyse Perry, the Australian fast Bowler Megan Schutt and some young Indian budding players, the team looked no less than a perfect Squad.
But their journey didn’t appear to be so smooth. Facing back-to-back 5 losses and retaining the last position in the Points Table was not something anyone would have expected out of them. The matches with Mumbai Indians, Delhi Capitals and Gujarat Giants seemed to be easily under the control of Women in Red and Black, but unfortunately, it always turned out in the loss of RCB.
Now as RCB has won back-to-back two matches, they still see a chance to secure their place in the Top 3 of the Table and qualify for the Eliminator. All the fans can do is, hope to witness some fierce cricketing action in the coming days.
The Turn of Tables before the Playoffs
Maybe the equation for qualification to the TOP 3 seemed to be simple some days ago, but with RCB getting back on track and clinching 2 matches, the tables appear to be a bit ambiguous. Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals have already earned themselves a (Q) mark in front of them and look to be fighting for the top spot to get a direct entry into the finals. At the same time, all the other teams seem to have equal chances to reach the Eliminator.
Though the Up warriorz are just one win away from securing their place in the Eliminator, It could be tomorrow’s match between Gujarat Giants and UP warriorz that would either end the campaign for Gujarat and RCB and help UPW reach the Playoffs, or maybe the situation could get more confusing with Women’s IPL just left with 4 more league matches to go.
Gujarat Giants step into the battleground last time tomorrow in the League Stage and winning is the only choice for them to stay in the race for Playoffs. Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals face each other the same day in the evening and would be fighting for the spot in the Finals and grab the opportunity to be the First finalist of the Inaugural Women’s IPL.
Let’s hope that we get to see more such knocks from Sophie Devine, Laura Wolvaardt and Smriti Mandhana while bowlers like Ellyse Perry, Ecclestone and Saika make it tougher for the batsmen to prove their mettle
Matches to Look For: Gujarat Giants Women Vs UP Warriorz, 20th March, 3:30 PM IST and Mumbai Indians Women vs Delhi Capitals Women, 20th March, 7:30 PM IST
woah! compulsive sports update indeed !!