Women on top..Smriti Mandhana blasts 100, hammers S African bowlers



Kimberley, Feb 7: Continuing her glorious run with the willow, opener Smriti Mandhana struck her third ODI century to help India pile a mammoth 302/3 in the second game of the three-match One-day International series against South African women here on Wednesday.



Smriti belted a 129-ball 135, laced with 14 fours and a six before the middle order comprising vice captain Harmanpreet Kaur (55 not out off 69 balls; 4X2, 6X1) and Veda Krishnamurthy (51 not out off 33; 4X6, 6X1) pressed the accelerator to guide the visitors past the 300-run mark.



Put in to bat, the Indian eves got off to a flier with Smriti and Poonam Raut (20 off 37; 4X3) putting on 56 runs, before Poonam departed caught behind by Trisha Chetty off pacer Marizanne Kapp.



Her dismissal brought in skipper Mithali Raj (20 off 34; 4X1), who added 51 runs in the company of Smriti, who by then had crossed her half century off 64 deliveries.



With India in a spot of bother losing two wickets for 107, Harmanpreet joined forces with Smriti and the duo frustrated the South Africans with quality strokeplay.



Smriti, who struck a 98-ball 84 in the opening match, took her time and smartly got to the three-figure mark off 116 balls, before taking the attack to the opposition, resulting in a 134-run third wicket stand with Harmanpreet.



Just when it appeared that the duo will bat the hosts out of the game, off-spinner Raisibe Ntozakhe struck with the crucial wicket of Smriti.



But the joy was short-lived for the Protea women with Veda going all guns blazing for her 33-ball half century, which resulted in a 61-run undefeated stand with Harmanpreet.



Brief Scores: Indian women 302/3 (Smriti Mandhana 135, Harmanpreet Kaur 55 not out, Veda Krishnamurthy 51 not out) vs South Africa women

IANS.

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