India’s T20 stars Harmanpreet Kaur and Smriti Mandhana started off their campaign at the Women’s Big Bash League with a bang in high-scoring matches.
Mandhana starred with a brilliant half-century as the Hobart Hurricanes defeated Melbourne Stars by a massive 72 runs at Burnie on Sunday. Opening the batting, the Indian vice-captain scored 69 off 41 balls with 13 boundaries to power Hobart to 196/6, the highest team total this WBBL so far. England captain Heather Knight then took three wickets to bowl Melbourne out for 124 in 16.5 overs.
India T20 captain Harmanpreet, meanwhile, was among the runs in both her outings with one loss and a big win, which she played a big part in.
On Saturday, her rapid-fire 45 could not save the Sydney Thunder as Sydnet Sixers’ Ellyse Perry scored an unbeaten 74 from 66 balls to set a target of 168/4. The Indian almost took her team home as she struck three big sixes in her 45 but was dismissed in the 16th over.
On Sunday against Brisbane Heat, she top-scored with a 56 off 26 deliveries with six fours and three sixes as Thunder amassed 192/4. In response, Brisbane were bowled out for 164 with Stafanie Taylor and Maisy Gibson taking three wickets each.