PERTH              -              Rachael Haynes was the hero for Australia with a classy half-century to help the hosts overcome a mighty scare against Sri Lanka in Perth. Chamari Athapaththu’s half-century set Sri Lanka on their way but two wickets apiece from Nicola Carey, who missed the India game, and Molly Strano, who came in to replace the injured Tayla Vlaeminck in the squad, held them at 122/6. Australian hearts were racing when Alyssa Healy, Ashleigh Gardner and Beth Mooney all fell within four overs in their ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Group A match. But a stunning 60 from Haynes in a solid partnership with captain Meg Lanning ensured their tournament hopes stayed alive with a five-wicket victory at the WACA. Australia didn’t hesitate in showing their intent as Megan Schutt struck early with her third ball, Mooney with an easy catch at point to remove Hasini Perera for a duck. It took until the end of the Powerplay for Athapaththu to see her next partner fall as Umesha Thimeshani was removed by Carey for 20, Jess Jonassen with the catch at mid-off. It was yet another impressive outing for Athapaththu against the Australians, her 38-ball half-century taking Sri Lanka to 91, but the hosts finally took their third wicket when the captain blasted the ball straight to opposite number Lanning. Anushka Sanjeewani’s 25 helped Sri Lanka edge to three figures, but the No.4 was caught by Delissa Kimmince off Strano’s bowling before Ama Kanchana perished for a duck two balls later. Meanwhile, Shafali Verma’s early sixes and Poonam Yadav’s latest starring role helped India secure an 18-run ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 victory over Bangladesh in Perth.

Verma smashed a 17-ball 39, including four sixes, in the Powerplay to steer India to the highest total of the competition so far with 142/6. Two wickets apiece for Salma Khatun and Panna Ghosh were not enough to halt momentum, nor 35 runs from top-scorer Nigar Sultana Joty as Bangladesh fell short of an upset at the WACA. Poonam, the hero in India’s opening-night victory with four wickets against Australia, once again impressed to take her total to the tournament to seven after just two matches.