April 2, 2023
Shafali Verma's follow-on fifty helps India cling on against England's might


Spinner says “whoever breaks first will lose battle” forward of ultimate day

Sophie Ecclestone is relishing the battle with Shafali Verma as England and India put together to face off on the last day of their one-off Test in Bristol.

Ecclestone, England’s left-arm spinner and the No. 1-ranked T20I bowler in the world, added three wickets to her in a single day tally of 1 as the residence aspect bowled India out for a first-innings 231 and enforced the follow-on.

But Verma, the No. 1-ranked T20I batter in the world, was India’s star for a second day operating, following her debut Test innings of 92 with an unbeaten 55 as her aspect closed at 83 for 1 on a rain-interrupted third day, nonetheless 82 runs behind.

She was joined by one other India debutant, Deepti Sharma, who was not out 18 after opener Smriti Mandhana had been dismissed for 8 on the final ball earlier than lunch, a wicket Ecclestone described as “crucial”.

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