Bangladesh share series with India after thrilling tie in deciding match
Bangladesh women's cricket team drew the three-match ODI series against mighty India after their third and series-deciding third ODI ended in a tie at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Mirpur today.
The deciding third match went down to the wire after the hosts posted 225 for four, thanks to a historic 107 off 160 balls by opener Fargana Haque Pinky. India, in reply, were bowled out for 225 runs in 49.3 overs. With scheduled time for the match having passed, there was no time left for a Super Over as both teams shared the three-match series.
Earlier, electing to bat, a 93-run stand between openers Shamima Sultana (52) and Fargana laid a solid platform for Bangladesh. While Fargana played the till the end, captain Nigar Sultana Joty's 24 and Sobhana Mostary's unbeaten 22-ball 23 helped the Tigresses register their second-highest total in ODIs -- behind 234 for seven against Pakistan in Hamilton in 2022.
Fargana's incredible knock, featuring seven boundaries, ended with a run-out in the final delivery of the game but, in the process, she became the first Bangladeshi woman cricketer to score an ODI century. The momentous occasion arrived in the final delivery of the 48th over when Fargana drove a Shafali Verma delivery for a boundary through the covers to complete her century off 156 deliveries. The previous best individual score in ODIs for Bangladesh women's team was Salma Khatun's unbeaten 92-ball 75 against India in Ahmedabad in 2013.
In reply, despite losing two wickets inside five overs, a 107-run third-wicket partnership between opener Smriti Mandhana and Harleen Deol took India to a stable ground.
Mandhana was dismissed for 59 runs and India suffered double blow in the 42nd over following run out dismissals of Deol, who scored team-high 77, and Deepti Sharma. However, with experienced Jemimah Rodrigues still in the middle, the visitors were favourites to win the match but an incredible late drama was in store.
India at one point needed 10 runs off 19 deliveries with four wickets in hand but three wickets in the span of five balls turned the match on its head, in favour of the Tigresses.
The game still swung like a pendulum when number eleven batter, Meghna Singh, struck a four in the penultimate ball of the 49th over, which meant that pacer Marufa Akter had to defend three runs in the final over.
Although Marufa conceded two singles in the first two balls, she got Meghna caught-behind in the third ball and the Bangladesh contingent and spectators had burst into wild celebrations.
Prior to the ODI series, the Tigresses lost the three-match T20I series but the hosts won the third fixture. Joty and her troops went on to build on the momentum by winning the first ODI by 40 runs via DLS -- - their first ever victory in the format over the women in blue. The formidable Indian team, however, bounced back in the second ODI with an emphatic 108-run win to level the series.