GG vs UPW, WPL 2023: Fifties’ Grace Harris, Tahlia McGrath lead UP Warriorz into playoffs | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: Grace Harris AND Talia McGrath hit crucial half centuries while Sophie Ecclestone held her nerves in a tense ending like UP Warriorz She beat the Gujarat Giants by three wickets in one last thriller in the Women’s Premier League match on Monday.
With the narrow win against the Giants at Brabourne Stadium, the Warriors also qualified for the playoffs, joining the Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals. Giants and Royal Challengers Bangalore have now been knocked out of the tournament.

Chasing a tough 179, Warriors crossed the line with one ball to spare. Alyssa Healy and co. he now has 4 wins in 7 games with one game to go in the group stage.

It was the crucial 78-run fourth wicket partnership between Tahlia and Grace that set the stage for the Warriors’ chase after they had made a horrific start. Staggering to 39 for 3, the Warriors lost the first three inside the powerplay, but then Tahlia and Grace fought back together to get the chase back on track. The Australian duo scored a sublime half-century as they bowled a formidable counter-attack against the Giants bowlers.

While Tahlia hit 38-ball 57, Grace set the stage on fire with a 41-ball 72 before bowling out in the penultimate over. Ecclestone (19 not out) then finished work for the Warriorz in the final over.
Grace blew the Giants offense to smithereens, hitting seven fours and four tops in the Giants’ 178/6 chase. When she started on 172, caught by Harleen Deol’s Kim Garth, there were still seven runs to score for the win.
There were some nervous moments as Simran Shaikh departed and became 177/7 for the Warriorz. Two runs from the last two deliveries can always be tricky but Ecclestone took a delivery from Sneh Rana to the edge to secure victory.
Grace has been involved in two productive collaborations, with compatriot McGrath and Sophie Ecclestone. While Graces’ stand with McGrath was worth 78, with Sophie she salvaged 42 runs and secured an easy transition to the last 16 with just one ball to spare.
The partnership between Grace and Tahlia had laid a solid foundation and the former continued even after the departure of her compatriot at 117/4.
Grace, who had hit an unbeaten 59 when the sides last met at DY Patil Stadium and secured a thrilling Warriorz victory with just one ball to spare, played with such ferocity that it made the players seem bowling alley of the Giants mere pawns.
All this despite the fact that the UP Warriorz got off to a bad start on a field that offered good bounce and good carry. The team was down at 3/39 before Grace and Tahlia combined to turn the tables on the Giants.
Skipper Alyssa Healy (12) went early after giving indications that she intended to do business.
Young Giants halfback Monica Patel took the precious scalp in only the second over of the innings after successive bowl boundaries by the Australian.
Monika was given a pep talk by teammates and the result was the big wicket two deliveries later. Left arm held a throw backwards on the mid and leg stump that bounced a little more and Healy engaged in a pull shot slightly early, getting a lead that flew into one leg Harleen Deol deep and profound.
The third over saw the Warriorz lose their second key batsman to Kiran Navgire with fast Australian right-hander Kim Garth dismissing the fast for just four and reducing the Warriorz to 2/19.
Adding to their woes left arm spinner Tanuja Kanwar had Devika Vaidya caught behind the stumps by Sushma Verma in the fifth over. Devika ran aimlessly down the track to hit the ball only to get a feather touch that flew towards the goalkeeper.
Earlier, a brilliant 93-run partnership between Dayalan Hemalatha (57 from 33 balls) and second most expensive player Ashleigh Gardner (60 from 39 balls) helped the Gujarat Giants to 178/6 in their do-or- die.
The authority and offensive manner with which the duo played indicated they were on a mission, given the do-or-die nature of the competition as the tournament enters its business end.
When the partnership came to an end, with Hemalatha dismissed by Parshavi Chopra in 17th with the team’s total at 143, the stand had put the team on course for a competitive total.
South African opener Laura Wolvaardt and Sophia Dunkley fulfilled their task of scoring powerplay points with a lot of urgency. The runs flowed freely as the two batting stalwarts were in the corner, with Wolvaardt slapping a fine boundary on only the third ball of the opener bowled by left arm pacer Anjali Sarvani.
The 23-year-old used the width on offer to drive past the set back point, making her intentions clear. Just two overs into the match and the Gujarat Giants were in overdrive, with the team having scored 26 runs.
The South African’s powerful six over a length delivery off the stump of Indian left-arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad in the second over had class and power written all over it.
Soon England batsman Dunkley took the lead, giving a further boost to the scoring rate.
(With inputs from PTI)


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