Chopra stands tall as Ireland surprises India
Anjum Chopra is the kind of player who is difficult to dismiss when she gets well set. The vice captain of the Indian team chose to do just that in India's encounter against Ireland in the CricInfo Women's World Cup. After being put in to bat by Ireland skipper Miriam Grealey, India made the best of a good batting surface. Choosing to open with Anju Jain and Purnima Rau, India got off to a disastrous start. With no runs on the board, captain Anju Jain was clean bowled. Four runs later, Purnima Rau ran herself out. If things weren't bad enough already, Chanderakantha Kaul followed in Rau's footsteps and she too was run out. India were 3 down with just 4 runs on the board.
Anjum Chopra kept a cool head through the fall of wickets and found in Hemalatha Kala an ideal partner. While Chopra got her eye in and dug her heels in for a long innings, Kala steadied the Indian innings. Although neither player launched a massive attack on the Irish bowlers, they effectively killed any hopes of an upset. The pair put on 94 for the second wicket, using up 26 overs in the process. Even then, it wa Kala who fell, not Chopra.
With the fall of Kala's wicket, India had run out of frontline batswomen. It was upto Chopra to bat with the utility cricketers and indeed the tail and prop up the Indian total. Slowed down by the loss of wickets, Chopra got to her halfcentury in a slow but steady 99 balls. From then on, she seemed to pick up the pieces and accelerate. Just when the going looked good, misfortune struck in the form of a run out. Chopra's priceless knock of 70, laced with seven boundaries had come to an end.
Fortunately for the Indian team, Chopra's knock had done enough to drive them towards a score of 199 off 50 overs. Her knock was again the top score on the day. As it turned out, Ireland were bowled out for 169 and Anjum Chopra was the player of the match for the second time in the tournament.
CricInfo Women's World Cup, 2000-01
India Women v Ireland Women at Christchurch, 11 Dec 2000
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