1st T20: Devine fifty, Martin burst take New Zealand women to 159/4 against India
Sophie Devine top-scored with 62. (Image courtesy: Whiteferns' Twitter).

Sophie Devine struck a half-century and along with Amy Sattherwaite and Katey Martin’s late bursts, helped New Zealand women post a competitive 159 for 4 against India during the first of the three T20I between the two sides. Opting to field, India women got an early breakthrough removing Suzie Bates cheaply, but Devine’s ninth T20I half-century and Martin’s cameo of 27 off 14 got New Zealand to a respectable total.

Left-arm spinner Radha Yadav struck in the second over to remove Bates for 7. Devine and Caitlin Gurrey had batted positively to put 36 runs for the second wicket before debutant Gurrey was cleaned up by medium pacer Arundhati Reddy. At 47 for 2, two of New Zealand’s most experienced campaigners – Devine and skipper Sattherwaite – came together and stitched a 69-run stand for the third wicket.

Devine began the assault by launching Anuja Patil for a six over deep square leg, followed by Sattherwaite collecting three boundaries in four balls in the next over by Poonam Yadav. As New Zealand women pushed after the 10-over mark, boundaries started to come. Devine pushed Poonam towards long-on for a single to bring up her fifty off 41 balls and stepped on the gas with consecutive boundaries off Reddy.

Sattherwaite did not hold back either and was equally effective, though she lost her concentration at a crucial juncture to give her wicket to Deepti Sharma (1/19 from four overs), shortly after Reddy had struck with the big wicket of Devine. With 121 on the board and three and a half overs left, India seemed to be edging back into the match, before Martin took over. 21 came off the final 12 deliveries with Martin finishing the innings with two sixes off the last over from Radha.

Brief Scores: New Zealand women 159 for 4 (Sophie Devine 62, Amy Sattherwaite 33; Deepti Sharma 1/19) in 20 overs.