Mithali Raj has already issued a warning to England. (Image courtesy: Getty Images)
Mithali Raj has already issued a warning to England. (Image courtesy: Getty Images)

A World Cup final. A sell-out crowd. A popular Indian Eves and the strong hosts. India have done it before at Lord s and captain Mithali Raj has issued an warning to England to not expect an easy contest when they square off for the ICC Women s World Cup 2017 final on Sunday. India turned the odds on Thursday with Harmanpreet Kaur smashing a record 171 not out (the highest score by an Indian player, male or female, in a World Cup knockout match) to set the foundation for a 36-run victory against hot favourites and defending champions Australia at Derby. WATCH Harmanpreet’s 171 decimate AUS in WWC17 semi-final

As a team we are all very excited to be part of the final, said Mithali as reported by AFP. India reached their first World Cup final since 2005. We knew that this tournament wasn t going to be easy but the way the girls have turned up at every situation when the team needed, whether it was the batters or bowlers, this win has definitely changed the scenario in terms of how the girls will look up to the final.

It definitely isn t going to be easy for England. But it will come down to how we perform on that day. We really have to work on our planning and strategy because England have also peaked after being defeated by us in the first game.

They have performed well in the run up to the final, so playing a host in their own country is going to be a challenge. But saying that this unit is up for it.

The final is touted as the rematch of the opening fixture for both sides wherein India shocked favourites England by 35 runs. However, since then England have won 8 matches in a row, first to top the league stages and then clinch a thriller of a semi-final against South Africa. Now it all boils down to the Mecca of cricket, Lord s.

Harmanpreet for her unbeaten 115-ball 171 was adjudged the player of the tournament. She slammed 20 fours and 7 sixes to lit up Derby as she brought up her third ODI century and also registered the second highest score of the tournament. India who were off to a cautious start in a rain-curtailed tie, set six-time champions Australia 282 to win.

Elyse Villani’s 75 kept Australia above the required run rate but they still fell short despite a stupendous effort from Alex Blackwell (90). Their dreams of playing their ninth World Cup final was thus shattered.

Disappointed Meg Lanning

Australian Meg Lanning, who is regarded as the best batter in the world was dismissed for 0 in the semi-final, believes there is there s a lot for Australia to improve on if they re to achieve more silverware, although they are still waiting on their future with contract discussions ongoing between Cricket Australia and Australian Cricketers Association.

It s definitely a very disappointing finish to the tournament, we came here to win, said Lanning. We re going to have to look at a few things and see what we re going to need to do, because all of the teams around the world are improving. We ve got a fair bit of work to do to make sure we keep getting better to make sure we beat sides like England and India.

With inputs from AFP