West Indian all-rounder Deandra Dottin played with both bat and ball as she propelled Supernovas to an unprecedented third win of the Women’s T20 Challenge title with a four-run victory over Velocity in a thrilling final here on Saturday. Dottin scored the highest score with a 44-ball 62 at the top of the standings to help Supernovas to 165 for seven after being brought to the bat. With the ball, she took two wickets for 28 runs in her four overs to play a key role in limiting Velocity to 161 for eight. South African batter Laura Wolvaardt nearly single-handedly took Velocity within striking distance of a sensational win with a blazing 65 out of 40 balls, including five fours and three sixes.
Wolvaardt, who became the only batter in the tournament to score two half-centuries, launched a ferocious attack in the death overs with a flurry of limits to give hopes of a stunning victory for Velocity.
Number 10 batter Simran Bahadur (20 not out on 10 balls) also chipped in with three consecutive fours in the penultimate left. Velocity needed 17 runs left from the final, but left arm spinner Sophie Ecclestone (2/28) allowed only 12 runs to win the match, despite Wolvaardt hitting a six on the first pass.
When England’s Ecclestone gave Velocity batters a hard time in the top half of the run chase, Australian leg spinner Alana King (3/32) did the same in the backend. King made a hat-trick after sacking Sneh Rana and Radha Yadav from consecutive balls in the 16th over.
Supernovas had won the first two editions of the tournament in 2018 and 2019 before losing to Trailblazers in the final in 2020. The tournament was not held last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Velocity finished second in 2019.
Velocity got off to a blazing start to their chase with openers Shafali Verma (15) and Yastika Bhatia (3) scoring 28 runs in the first two overs, but that proved to be the only time the Deepti Sharma-led side took the lead in the game .
They suffered a batting collapse with half of them back in the hut for 64 runs in the 11th over. They were reduced to 38 for three, and from then on it only got worse.
Previously, Dottin took full advantage of an early reprieve to score a blistering half-century and propel Supernovas forward.
Dottin, 30, was dropped at 13 by Deepti Sharma’s Sneh Rana in the fourth over, and she made Velocity pay for that costly mistake by making 62 off 44 balls, which was dotted with a four and four sixes.
The veteran campaigner netted 73 runs for the opening wicket with Priya Punia (28) and added 58 for the second wicket with in-form captain Harmanpreet Kaur (43 from 29 balls).
For Velocity captain Deepti Sharma, Kate Cross and Simran Bahadur took two wickets each, while Ayabonga Khaka took one. The Supernovas were able to score just 34 runs in the last five overs while losing five wickets.
Dottin and Punia got the Supernovas off to a flying start, scoring at a brisk pace and reaching 46 without a loss in the power play.
Punia skipped a six on Cross in the third, but her partner Dottin did even better, breaking consecutive maxima in the sixth over bowled by Rana. Punia went strong as she came out in the 10th after being bowled by Simran Bahadur after breaking a six.
Captain Kaur, the tournament’s highest scorer, came out and started collecting the runs right away, skipping a six on Rana in the 12th and following it up with two maximums bowled over by Yadav in the 14th. In the next over, Velocity captain Deepti struck as she threw Dottin.
The Supernovas got a strike break in the death-overs when they lost four wickets for the addition of just 11 runs.
Pooja Vastrakar (5) was cleared by Ayabonga Khaka in the 17th over before Cross claimed two wickets – those of Kaur and Sophie Ecclestone (2) – in the space of three balls in the next over.
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