The Indian women’s team will play Test cricket after a gap of nearly seven years when they start their England tour with a one-off Test match in Bristol in June. Although they rarely play the format, India have been successful in both their previous Test outings against England, in 2006 in Taunton and in 2014 in Wormsley. We take a look at both these wins.
India Women v England Women, 2nd Test, Taunton, 2006
India had lost eight wickets in their second innings in the first Test in Leicester but had hung on to a draw. In Taunton, a 136-run third-wicket partnership between captain Mithali Raj (65) and Anjum Chopra (98) helped India post 307 after choosing to bat. Rumeli Dhar chipped in with 43 as India kept England on the field for 148.1 overs. India’s seam attack of Jhulan Goswami (5/33), Amita Sharma and Dhar then demolished England for 99 and Raj enforced the follow-on. Skipper Charlotte Edwards led a fightback with a century and opener Caroline Atkins made 68 as England stretched the follow-on innings to 305. India lost five wickets for just 74 in the chase but Mithali Raj was around to guide them to the target of 98 for a 1-0 series win.
India Women v England Women, Only Test, Wormsley, 2014
Mithali Raj won the toss again and asked England to bat, after which seamer Niranjana Nagarajan (4/19) did most of the damage to send the hosts crashing to 92 all out. All-rounder Jenny Gunn picked up five wickets in response as India themselves succumbed for a mere 114. Gunn then top-scored in the England second innings, her unbeaten 62 at No 8 taking the hosts to 202. India were set 181 to win, and a 76-run opening stand between Thirush Kamini (28) and Smriti Mandhana (51) set them on their way. There was a wobble as they slipped to 115/4 but again Raj (50*) settled in for the remainder of the chase, and in the company of Shikha Pandey (28*), brought up a memorable six-wicket win.
India have played only one more Test after the Wormsley victory, brushing aside South Africa by an innings and 34 runs in Mysore in 2014. On their upcoming England tour, apart from the Bristol Test, they will also play three ODIs and three T20Is.
Featured photo: Twitter / BCCI Women