Recent Match Report – RCB Women vs DC Women 7th Match 2023/24

Delhi Capitals 194 for 5 (Shafali 50, Capsey 46, Devine 2-23, de Klerk 2-35) beat Royal Challengers Bangalore 169 for 9 (Mandhana 74, Meghana 36, Jonassen 3-21, Kapp 2-35) by 25 runs

Shafali Verma and Alice Capsey carried on their good form with the bat to lead Delhi Capitals to victory and end an unbeaten run in 2024 for Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Shafali scored her second half-century in as many matches and shared an 82-run stand for the second wicket with Capsey to help Capitals to 194 for 5 as sixes rained down at Bengaluru’s M Chinnaswamy Stadium. A total of 19 sixes were scored in the match, equalling the record for women’s T20s. Shafali contributed four of them and three went to Smriti Mandhana in a highly entertaining 74 off 43 balls which gave her side hope of staging the highest successful run chase in the competition.

But Capitals had poured on 70 runs over the final five overs of their innings, largely through a vital 22-ball 48 stand between Jess Jonassen and Marizanne Kapp. The duo also shared five wickets between them and, in the end, the task was too great for RCB, whose search for a win over Capitals at this tournament continues.

Shafali and Capsey lead the way

Shafali lofted Renuka Singh back over the bowler’s head for a lovely four in the opening over of the match and, moments later, was put down at cover by Shreyanka Patil. A six over deep midwicket off Sophie Devine followed next over, but it was Devine who made the first breakthrough when Meg Lanning picked out Georgia Wareham at deep backward point off a short, wide ball. Ideally, she should have put that away, leading to Devine not even celebrating as Lanning trudged back to the dugout for 11. Shafali lofted Sophie Molineux over long-on for a 78m six to take Capitals to 45 for 1 at the end of the powerplay.

Capsey, who had scored 75 in a losing cause during the opening match against Mumbai Indians, took to legspinner Asha Sobhana with two fours in three balls, thumped over mid-on and reverse-swept with power. Wareham entered the attack in the 10th over and was immediately dispatched over the fence at deep midwicket by Capsey, who took her partnership with Verma past fifty two balls later with a reverse for four. Wareham produced a wonderful piece of fielding to cut Shafali’s certain six to two, leaping high into the air just inside the rope, plucking the ball from the sky and throwing it back into the outfield as she careered over the boundary.

Shafali brought up her fifty with back-to-back sixes off Shreyanka, but she fell next ball, trying for a third but managing only to find Wareham waiting under it at deep midwicket.

De Klerk takes her chance

Called into the RCB side to replace an ill Ellyse Perry, Nadine de Klerk made the most of her WPL debut, removing Jemimah Rodrigues before she could pose a threat and claiming the prize wicket of Capsey for 46. It wasn’t all smooth for the South Africa allrounder, though. She saw Capsey muscle her first delivery, a slower one outside off-stump, over deep midwicket for six and should have had Capsey out for 41 but Devine spilled a straightforward chance at long-on.

She had Rodrigues out for a four-ball duck, extracting some extra bounce as the batter tried to clear mid-off and found Simran Bahadur waiting there. But it was a pin-point yorker which clattered into Capsey’s stumps that provided the highlight for de Klerk. Her last over proved costly as Kapp piled on two sixes and a four, with Devine breaking the Kapp-Jonassen union in the penultimate over when Kapp miscued to Bahadur at long-off. Jonassen, who replaced fellow Australian Annabel Sutherland in the Capitals’ line-up, struck four fours and two sixes en route to an unbeaten 36 off 16 balls, her six off the last ball, from Patil, taking her side past the formidable 190-mark.

Mandhana shines, rest disappoint

Mandhana began RCB’s pursuit in fine fashion, racing to 36 off 21 balls after four overs and dominating her partnership with Devine, who faced just three balls to that point. By the end of the powerplay, she had struck seven fours and two sixes for her 45 not out, taking RCB to 52 without loss. Mandhana cut Minnu Mani behind backward point and ran two to reach her maiden WPL fifty and that prompted Devine to immediately break the shackles that had seen her restricted to nine off 12 balls. Devine advanced down the pitch to pummel back-to-back sixes over long-on and deep midwicket, both measured at a staggering 87m. She fell in the next over, however, top-edging a full toss from Arundhati Reddy to Jonassen at midwicket.

With RCB still scoring below the required run rate, it was always going to be a big ask, despite Smriti accessing all areas of the ground for her runs. She elegantly placed Radha Yadav over cover to the boundary to get them back on track momentarily and her six off Kapp over deep midwicket to move to 74 was sublime. But she was out on the very next delivery when Kapp took the pace off a length ball and pegged back off stump as Mandhana swung early and missed, having faced 43 balls.

Kapp claimed another key wicket when she had Richa Ghosh caught by Jonassen to end with 2 for 35 from her four overs. S Meghana was run out for 36 and Reddy had de Klerk caught cheaply next ball with RCB needing 31 off eight balls. Jonassen, Australia’s death bowler deluxe claimed three wickets in the final over by which time, the result was beyond doubt.

Valkerie Baynes is a general editor, women’s cricket, at ESPNcricinfo

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