Superb bowling by Ellyse Perry (3-16) and fine late-order hitting by Kanika Ahuja (46) and Richa Ghosh (31 not out) helped Royal Challengers Bangalore Women UP Warriorz by five wickets in the Women’s Premier League (WPL) 2023 at the Dr DY Patil Academy here on Wednesday.
Australia international Perry claimed the crucial wicket of compatriot Grace Harris, who had rescued Up Warriorz with a vital contribution of 46, and added the wickets of all-rounder Deepti Sharma (22) and Shweta Sehrawat (6) to help restrict them to 135 l out in the 19.3 overs. Sophie Devine had caused the early damage after skipper Smriti Mandhana won the toss and decided to bowl first.
In reply, Royal Challengers Bangalore had Devine blasting 14 runs in the first five balls of the opening over — hitting two fours and a six but fell to Grace Harris on the last ball, caught by Tahlia McGrath as she failed to keep a slog sweep down. RCB lost skipper Smriti Mandhana for a three-ball zero, bowled by Deepti Sharma, on the same score.
Perry too was out cheaply, caught by Sophie Ecclestone off Vaidya for 10. But Heather Knight and Kanika Ahuja took the score to 60 when Knight departed in the 9th over. Kanika (46 off 30, 8×4, 1×6) and Richa Ghosh (31 off 32 balls, 3×4, 1×6) then raised 60 runs for the fifth wicket partnership and put RCB on way to victory. Richa Ghosh remained unbeaten on 31 with Sravanka Patil 5 not out as RCB chased the target, reaching 136/5 with 12 deliveries to spare.
This was Royal Challengers Bangalore’s first win in the tournament after five losses while UP Warriorz slumped to their third defeat in five matches.
Earlier, Perry got into her act after New Zealand pacer Sophie Devine had sent back UP openers Alyssa Healy (1) and Devika Vaidya (0) in quick succession. And when fellow pacer Megan Schutt sent back Tahlia McGrath, UP were down to 5/3 from which they barely managed to recover.
Kiran Navgire (22) was soon out and when Simran Shaikh departed for two runs, they slumped to 31/5. Deepti Sharma and Grace Harris took the score to 100 when Deepti flicked straight to deep midwicket for 22. A run later Grace Harris was out for 46 and UP failed to put up a defendable total.
UP Warriors 135 all out in 19.3 overs (Grace Harris 46, Deepti Sharma 22, Kiran Navgire 22; Ellyse Perry 3-16, Sophie Devine 2-22, Sobhana Asha2-27) lost to Royal Challengers Bangalore 136/5 in 18 overs (Kanika Ahuja 46, Richa Ghosh 31, Heather Knight 24; Deepti Sharma 2-26) by 5 wickets.