Shafali Verma's sensational 76 not out off 28 balls in a small run chase for Delhi Capitals took even her inspirational skipper Meg Lanning by surprise. (More Cricket News)
Lanning admitted that explosive batter Shafali Verma produced a knock against Gujarat Giants on Saturday that no one saw coming in the Women’s Premier League (WPL).
After Marizanne Kapp’s 4-0-15-5 blew away the Gujarat Giants, who could manage a mere 105/9 in their 20 overs, Shafali hammered five sixes and 10 fours in the company of Lanning (21 not out) to power Delhi Capitals to a 10-wicket win.
“I did not see that coming from Shafali, I do not think anyone did,” said Lanning to the media after the match here at the DY Patil Stadium.
“She played to her strengths and got on a roll and when that happens in T20 cricket you just got to be going with it.”
The Delhi Capitals captain said the pitch assisted the pacers early on.
“The pitch was a new-ball wicket. The was a little bit (of help) there if you got it in the right areas which we felt like we did,” Lanning said.
“But Shafali took the wicket out of the equation, she backed herself, played to her strengths, stayed still and hit straight. On these wickets if you do that, you are going to be successful. I loved standing at the other end watching her do her thing,” she added.
Lanning praised Marizanne Kapp for her stunning five-for that set the platform for Delhi Capitals.
“She just bowled her stock ball with the natural length. She was able to get a little bit out of the wicket. She had been a little bit down, I do not think she has bowled that badly throughout the tournament, that is the nature of the game. But to see her get some rewards was good,” Lanning said.
Gujarat Giants head coach Rachael Haynes admitted that her side made an error by leaving out Sophia Dunkley, whose 65 against Royal Challengers Bangalore made the difference.
“Marizanne is a great bowler and I do not want to take anything away from her. To take a batter out who had performed in the game before (last match), I am not sure (if) that was the right call,” Haynes said.
“We have had two players in this tournament who made half-centuries and Dunk’s (Sophia Dunkley) was probably one of the best T20 innings I have seen in quite some time. We need to (have) the in-form players batting in this competition, the best players facing the most balls and unfortunately a good bowler just went through us tonight,” she added.