WPL: Mooney, Shakil keep Gujarat’s playoff hopes alive

Gujarat Giants Women registered a thrilling eight-run win against UP Warirorz Women in Match 8 of the Women’s Premier League (WPL) 2024 on Monday, March 11 at Arun Jaitley Stadium, Delhi. After opting to bat first, Gujarat posted a decent score of 152/8 in their allotted 20 overs with captain Beth Mooney leading from the front with her knock of 74* (52).

She was well supported by her opening partner Laura Wolvaardt who scored 43 (30). Sophie Ecclestone shone with the ball for UP registering figures of 3/38 in four overs. In reply, UP came agonizingly close to pulling off an unbelievable chase. However, they eventually fell nine runs short of their target finishing their innings on 144/5 in their 20 overs.

Only Deepti Sharma and Poonam Khemnar (36* off 36) showed some fight for UP while their top order was blown away by a magnificent spell by Shabnam Shakil. Courtesy of their win, Gujarat kept themselves alive in the knockout race and will remain in contention to qualify if Royal Challengers Bangalore Women lose their last game against Mumbai Indians Women.

Top Performers of the Match

Deepti Sharma (88* off 60)

The southpaw walked in to bat with her team reeling on 35/5 after seven overs. However, Deepti was unfazed by the precarious situation at hand and started the innings positively with a boundary against Kathryn Bryce. She managed to find boundaries at regular intervals and kept the scoreboard ticking. The southpaw registered the third consecutive half-century of the season and played a scintillating innings of 88* (60) with the help of nine fours and four sixes.

Shabnam Shakil (3/11)

The 17-year-old seamer got her team off to a perfect start as she got the prized scalp of UP captain Alyssa Healy (4 off 3) getting her caught at mid-off. She once again struck on the last ball of the over dismissing Chamari Athapaththu (0 off 3) for a duck. Shakil further destroyed the stumps of Shweta Sehrawat (8 of 9) in her last over and finished her spell with figures of 3/11 in four overs leaving UP on 35/5 after seven overs.

What’s next for both teams?

It was the last league fixture for UP and they finished the league stage ranked on the fourth spot with three wins from five matches having six points to their name. On the other hand, Gujarat has one more game remaining against Delhi Capitals Women on Wednesday, March 13 at the same venue.