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WPL 2023: Buoyant UP Warriorz hoping to end Mumbai Indians' winning streak (preview)

Mumbai, March 11 (IANS) After thrashing Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) thanks to a magnificent knock by captain Alyssa Healy, UP Warriorz are on a high and hoping to continue with the momentum in their next match of the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL).

But they have a tough task on hand as they now face the rampant Mumbai Indians Women, who are unbeaten with three wins.

Placed third with four points from three matches, the UP Warriorz will be eyeing their second successive win when they take on high-flyers Mumbai Indians in a highly-anticipated clash at the iconic Brabourne Stadium on Sunday.

The UP Warriorz began their campaign with a stellar win against Gujarat Giants in their opening match of the WPL. A phenomenal performance by Grace Harris and Kiran Navgire against Gujarat Giants guided the Warriorz past the Adani-owned franchise at the DY Patil Stadium in the opener.

Right after the opening game, the UP Warriorz went up against the Delhi Capitals at the DY Patil Stadium in a high-scoring game. While the result of that did not turn out in their favour, Tahlia McGrath showed her class as she scored a blistering unbeaten 90 runs from 50 deliveries as she smashed 11 boundaries and 4 sixes, which was a valiant effort but added to the entertainment value of the game.

In their most recent game, UP Warriorz decimated the Royal Challengers Bangalore, who are yet to win a game in the WPL. But the UP Warriorz were flawless against Bangalore and defeated them comfortably. Royal Challengers Bangalore were put into bat first and were bowled out for a competitive total of 138, thanks to an effective performance by Sophie Ecclestone with the ball as she picked up 4 wickets while being extremely economical.

The UP Warriorz chased the total with ease within 13 overs without losing a single wicket, captain Alyssa Healy led from the front with the bat as she put in an explosive performance during her sublime knock of 96 runs off 47 balls.

“Since the time we played our first game, we have been playing as a unit whether we win or lose. We will always play as a team. Even during team meetings, it is discussed that we should have each other’s back no matter what the situation is. These are all small things but all this combined helps a lot in a T20 tournament like this,” said UP Warriorz Vice-Captain Deepti Sharma, while talking about how the squad is gearing up for the clash against Mumbai Indians.

Mumbai have been playing well but I trust my team. The last two matches that we played; shows the potential we have. We will play our natural game against Mumbai Indians in the upcoming game. Now we are focusing on our abilities and our strategy,” she added.

Deepti went on to talk about their strategy.

“Whenever we are batting first, we always try to take our innings to the last ball. We back each other and have faith in each other’s abilities. The coaching and support staff are always motivating us and have been giving constant support to us. We never ever give up. Before going into the game, our mindset is that we have to win this game. Having a positive mindset is essential, something that would be pivotal against a strong Mumbai Indians side,” she said.

The UP Warriorz having started the tournament with some emblematic individual performances in the first three games will be looking to end their opponent’s winning streak in the tournament. Mumbai Indians, under the guidance of Harmanpreet Kaur, are yet to taste defeat in the WPL and will be wary of the talented game-changers in the UP squad going into this game.

However, the superb performance by Alyssa Healy and co, against Royal Challengers Bangalore will give them a lot of confidence for the game against Mumbai Indians at the Brabourne Stadium, which is set to be a thriller.



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