Indian Women announce their return to test cricket with a brilliant draw against England

Indian women who were playing their first test after 7 years managed to throw cold waters on all the intentions of England Women as their resilient show drew the one-off Test at Bristol on Saturday. Indian debutantes notched up impressive shows that denied the hosts the chance to defeat India for the first time on their home soil in the test format.

England women declared their first innings with the score of 396/9 before bowling out India Women for 231, earning a 165-run lead to force a follow on the visitors, leaving India with a tough job at hand on the final day. India lost the crucial wickets of Deepti Sharma, Mithali Raj, Harmanpreet Kaur and Punam Raut, but debutant Sneh Rana steadied the ship for India and scored a half century on her maiden outing and guided India towards a draw.

Rana's 8th wicket stand with fast bowler Shikha Pandey added 41 runs off 101 deliveries. After Shikha's dismissal, Rana built another 104-run stand with Taniya Bhatia (44*).

Sneh Rana was batting on 80 when both the sides agreed on a draw with only 12 overs of play left in the final session of the final day. India's score was 334/8 when the decision was taken with a lead of 179 runs. The match featured another debutante displaying a solid performance as Shafali Verma scored 96 runs in the first and 63 runs in the 2nd innings. She also built a century partnership with fellow opener Smriti Mandhana (78) in the 1st innings. Deepti Sharma (54) and Punam Raut (39) also played crucial knocks in the 2nd innings.

In what was the first test for Indian Women since 2014, the side did a fantastic job against a formidable English team in their own backyard, that too with a limited time to prepare and practice. With youngsters showing great intent and character in their very first test outings and the experience of veterans, it's safe to say that the Indian Women's team is back in business!

The result implies that the multi-format series is tied at 2-2, with the Royal London ODI series starting on Sunday June 27 at Bristol.

England Women and India Women draw LV= Insurance Test

England 396-6 dec drew with India 231 & 344-8 (f/o)


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