Christchurch: India opener Shafali Verma on Sunday said her intention was to time the ball well during her lazing knock of 53 off 46 balls in a must-win match against South Africa in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup. Shafali’s knock, laced with eight fours at a strike rate of 115.22, was instrumental in India posting 274/7 in their 50 overs at Hagley Oval.
“I’m very happy with my knock because I’m always thinking about what the team wants and I got some runs with good timing shots. So, I am very happy,” said Shafali in a mid-match chat with broadcasters.
Through her third ODI fifty and first in the World Cup, Shafali also became the second-youngest Indian cricketer to get a half-century in the mega event. What was striking about Shafali’s knock was her attacking boundaries and a wide array of shots dismantling South Africa’s ferocious pacers, Shabnim Ismail and Ayabonga Khaka.
“I know they are fast. So, I was thinking about how to time the ball. That was what I was just doing and that is a good thing. Whatever I think, I went out and did that, so I was very happy to do well against their fast bowling,” stated Shafali.
Shafali’s knock had come to a disappointing end in the 15th over as she and Smriti Mandhana were involved in a massive mix-up, resulting in the youngster falling.
“That is like a misunderstanding (run-out with Smriti Mandhana). I can’t say it’s my or her mistake. I walked through because I didn’t want to get her out. It’s cricket, misunderstandings happen sometimes. But it’s okay,” insisted Shafali.
Shafali signed off by expressing confidence in the bowling attack missing Jhulan Goswami due to side strain to defend 274 and reach the semi-finals. “That (274) is a very good score. I hope our bowlers will do a good job today.”