Aakash Chopra feels Sophie Devine missed out on a well-deserved century in the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) WPL 2023 win against the Gujarat Giants (GG).
The Giants set a massive 189-run target for RCB after opting to bat first at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai on Saturday, March 18. Devine then smoked 99 runs off just 36 balls to help her side overhaul the target with eight wickets and 27 balls to spare to keep alive their hopes of making the playoffs.
While reviewing the match on the “AakashVani” show on JioCinema, Chopra highlighted that RCB brought their destructive game to the fore, elaborating:
“RCB not only won this game but issued a statement as well that when they play well, they can play so well. The total was extremely big, which could have been difficult to chase. We should actually see this match in reverse order. Sophie Devine – 99, she deserved a century.”
Chopra was effusive in his praise for Sophie Devine, saying:
“The shots she played, seriously wow. It was the wow innings of the Wow Premier League. She struck such huge sixes. She not only hit sixes but blew the opposition team away. It should have been the first century of the WPL but unfortunately, she was caught at mid-off at a score of 99.”
Devine smashed nine fours and eight sixes during her innings. She strung together a 125-run first-wicket partnership with Smriti Mandhana (37 off 31) in just 9.2 overs to all but end the game as a contest.
“Laura Wolvaardt has struck two consecutive half-centuries” – Aakash Chopra on the Gujarat Giants’ innings
Aakash Chopra praised Laura Wolvaardt and Sabbhineni Meghana (31 off 32) for stringing together a 63-run second-wicket partnership during the Gujarat Giants’ innings, observing:
“If we talk about the Gujarat Giants’ batting, they also scored runs. Laura Wolvaardt has struck two consecutive half-centuries. Meghana was sent slightly up the order, it was like an out-of-syllabus question, and she also scored runs.”
While also appreciating Ashleigh Gardner for playing a blazing knock for the Giants, Chopra concluded by pointing out that Devine made a mockery of the challenging target, stating:
“Ashleigh Gardner was also there in the end. All bowlers, barring Shreyanka Patil, were hit a lot. Runs were there on the board and the Gujarat Giants had bright chances of winning till of course, Sophie Devine came and shone.”
Gardner smashed 41 runs off 26 balls, a knock studded with six fours and a six. Dayalan Hemalatha (16* off 6) and Harleen Deol (12* off 5) also struck a few lusty blows to take the Giants to a seemingly winning score.
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