Taniya Bhatia

Picture Credit: BCCI Women

The one-off Test between Indian Women and England Women got off to an action-packed start in Bristol on Wednesday. After Heather Knight won the toss and opted to bat first, England openers got them to a fantastic start. Although the Indian bowlers did create a few half chances to put pressure on the batters, England kept on scoring runs as they got past the 50-run mark quite comfortably. However, when it looked like the hosts will go on to lunch without losing a wicket, India got the much-needed breakthrough courtesy of some brilliant wicketkeeping by Taniya Bhatia.

Winfield Hill runs out of luck

England opener Lauren Winfield Hill had a mixed outing in the first session on Day 1 of the one-off Test. The right-handed batter played some glorious shots throughout her innings but was also lucky at times. In the 7th over of the innings, she got an outside edge off the bowling of Jhulan Goswami which went straight towards Smriti Mandhana at first slip. However, it was dropped and Hill heaved a huge sigh of relief.

Indian pace bowler and debutant Pooja Vastrakar was introduced into the attack by captain Mithali Raj in the next over and she also forced an edge which unfortunately fell between the slips and gully. Vastrakar continued to bowl her heart out and she was finally rewarded in her 5th over (21st over of the innings) when Hill got an outside edge while playing a cover drive.

It looked like that the ball would between the slip and the keeper but another debutant Taniya Bhatia flew towards her right and grabbed a brilliant catch to give her side the all-important breakthrough. It was a proud moment for captain Mithali Raj as two debutants combined to give India the first wicket of the Test match.

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England’s score read 69/1 in 20.3 overs as Lauren Winfield Hill was dismissed after her 35-run knock. Tammy Beaumont was joined by captain Heather Knight at the crease after the fall of the first wicket.