Who is Harmanpreet Kaur? Meet India women team’s new batting sensation who smashed 171 runs against Australia in ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 semifinal

By: | Updated: July 21, 2017 10:10 AM

Harmanpreet Kaur just played the innings of her life on Thursday when she blasted the Australian bowlers to all parts of the ground with her unbeaten knock of 171 off 115 balls in the Women's World Cup semifinal in Derby.

Harmanpreet Kaur just played the innings of her life on Thursday. (ICC)

Women’s World Cup 2017: Harmanpreet Kaur who is known for her big-hitting abilities played the innings of her life on Thursday when she blasted the Australian bowlers to all parts of the ground scoring of 171 runs off 115 balls in the ongoing ICC Women’s World Cup semifinal in Derby. The right-hand batsman hit as many as 20 fours and 7 sixes in career-best knock despite being troubled by cramps and exhaustion. Her 171 is the second highest score by an Indian in women’s one-day internationals, with Deepti Sharma sitting at the helm with 188 runs. But what makes Kaur so important for the Indian side?

The Punjab-girl made her ODI debut at age of 20 against arch-rivals Pakistan in March 2009 Women’s Cricket World Cup at Bradman Oval, Bowral. In the match, she bowled 4 overs conceding 10 runs and also caught Armaan Khan off Amita Sharma. In only her eighth one-day game, she walked in with India tottering at 26 for 4 against England and went on to score 84. She scored her two one-day centuries in 2013, the first against England and the second against Bangladesh. Kaur was appointed India’s T20 captain in November 2016, taking over from Mithali Raj. She was named as Indian women’s captain for the 2012 Women’s Twenty20 Asia Cup final, as captain Mithali Raj and vice-captain Jhulan Goswami were out because of injuries. She made her debut as captain against Pakistan women’s team as India defended 81 runs and thus won Asia Cup.

She played a starring role in a T20 against Australia in January 2016, scoring a 31-ball 46 to help India to record its highest ever T20 chase. Her strong performances as an aggressive top-order player caught the attention of franchise scouts from Australia. A right-handed top-order batsman, Kaur is capable of hitting long sixes. Kaur has now emerged as one of the top, most successful Indian woman cricketers. In July 2016, she made history by signing for Sydney Thunder in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL). She is the first woman cricketer from India to do so. In May 2017, she then again made history by signing for England’s domestic T20 tournament.

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Notably, her 137 run partnership with Deepti Sharma while an unbeaten 43-run stand between Kaur and Veda Krishnamurthy pushed India’s total to 281.

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