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ENG W vs IND W: Shafali Verma scores second half-century on Test debut, joins Sachin Tendulkar in elusive list

Shafali on Friday became the fourth player to record 50+ scores in both innings of her debut women's Test.

India TV Sports Desk India TV Sports Desk
New Delhi Published on: June 18, 2021 22:03 IST
Teenage batting sensation Shafali Verma
Image Source : TWITTER/BCCI

Teenage batting sensation Shafali Verma

Opener Shafali Verma once again led from the front with an aggressive innings -- batting 55 (68 balls) -- as the Indian women's cricket team went into tea interval at 83 for one after they were host England asked them to follow on on the third day of the one-off Test.

Despite the effort of 17-year-old Shafali, who had made 96 in the first innings, India still trail England by 82 runs.

India had lost the wicket of Smriti Mandhana early in the second innings. The left-hander fell to pace bowler Katherine Brunt for a 13-ball eight. But Shafali, who has already hit 11 fours in her second innings, and Deepti Sharma (batting 18) have already added an unbeaten 54 for the second wicket.

Shafali, in the process, became the fourth player to record 50+ scores in both innings of her debut women's Test. She joined Lesley Cooke (1986), Vanessa Bowen (1998), and Jess Jonassen (2015) in the elusive list. 

The Rohtak batswoman is now the youngest women's player to have achieved the feat of hitting two Test half-centuries and second overall (only behind legendary Sachin Tendulkar) in international cricket.

Shafali hit twin Test fifties at age of 17 years & 139 days while Tendulkar had registered the milestone when he was 17 years & 107 days. Before Shafali, only Sunil Gavaskar was the only Indian player who had hit two fifties in both innings of debut Test. 

Earlier, left-arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone's four for 88 helped England women dismiss Indian women for 231 and take a 165-run lead on first innings.

India, who had got off to a strong start with a 167-run stand between Shafali (96) and Smriti Mandhana (78), lost track late on the second day on Thursday as they lost five wickets for 16 runs to go to stumps at 187 for five.

The third day's morning session did not bring any luck or resistance from India as they lost both Harmanpreet Kaur and Taniya Bhatia without the addition of any score.

At 197/8 after the fall of Sneh Rana, it looked like India would not reach even 200. However, Pooja Vastrakar and Deepti Sharma added 33 for the ninth wicket. Skipper Heather Knight took two wickets for seven runs with her off-spin. Altogether six of India's wickets fell to spin.

(With IANS Inputs)

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