The Indian women's cricket team scaled new heights when openers Deepti Sharma and Poonam Raut put on a world-record 320-run opening stand during a 249-run victory over Ireland in the women's quadrangular series ODI match in Senwes Park, Potchesfroom. It's the biggest opening stand in ODIs not just for women but even for men.
India scored 358-2 and Ireland, in reply, were all out for 109 in 40 overs, handing India's women their biggest victory in terms of runs in ODIs. Deepti took just 160 balls to score 188 runs - the second highest individual score of all time in women's cricket while Poonam scored 109 during their record stand, which lasted 45.3 overs.
Deepti, who hit 27 fours and two sixes, is now India's highest scorer in women's cricket, second only to the all-time highest of 229 not out, scored by Australia's Belinda Clark against Denmark. Deepti broke the Indian record scripted by Jaya Sharma, who had scored 138 not out against Pakistan women in Karachi in 2005.
The Indian women's cricket team had not breached the 300-run mark in any one-dayer before this, with their previous highest being 298-2 against the West Indies in 2004.
Before Deepti and Poonam's marathon stand, the record for the highest partnership in women's cricket belonged to England's Sarah Taylor and Caroline Atkins, who had put on 268 for the first wicket against South Africa in 2008. With four wins from four matches, India are now the only unbeaten side in the tournament with wins over South Africa, Ireland (twice) and Zimbabwe.
Jhulan now leading wicket-taker
Former India captain Jhulan Goswami became the highest wicket-taker in women's ODI cricket. The 34-year-old right-arm pacer achieved this feat, overtaking retired Australian seamer Cathryn Fitzpatrick's career haul of 180 with a three-wicket haul against South Africa women in the ongoing quadrangular series at Potchefstroom.
Jhulan now has 181 wickets in 153 matches at an average of 21.76 and an even more impressive economy rate of 3.18. The pacer, who had missed the Women's World Cup Qualifying tournament in February due to a shoulder injury, had picked one wicket against Ireland in the first match. Her late strikes helped India bundle out South Africa for a paltry 119.