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Indian players celebrate a New Zealand wicket during the inaugural U19 Women’s T20 World Cup on Friday. Image Credit: Courtesy: Twitter@ BCCIWomen

Potchefstroom: Riding on performances from leg-spinner Parshavi Chopra and opener Shweta Sehrawat, India have breezed into the final of the inaugural U19 Women’s T20 World Cup with an eight-wicket victory over New Zealand in the first semi-final at the JB Marks Oval on Friday.

The victory set up a mouth-watering final against England, who held their nerve to beat Australia by three runs in a thrilling semi-final.

Electing to field first, Parshavi justified captain Shafali Verma’s call to bowling first with a spell of 3-20 in her four overs and helped India restrict New Zealand to a mere 107 in 20 overs.

In reply, Shweta asserted her run-making prowess by hitting her third half-century in the competition and remained unbeaten on 61 off 45 balls to complete the chase in 14.2 overs.

England bowlers restricted Australia to 96 and win a thrilling second semi-final by three runs. Image Credit: Courtesy: Twitter@englandcricket

With their powerful batting line-up having faltered by posting 99 all out and leaving Australia exactly 100 runs at under a run a ball to win, an intense effort in the field and with the ball helped England defend a modest target.

Player of the match Hannah Baker led the charge, with the leg-spinner’s beguiling spell fetching her figures of 3/10 off four overs, with skipper Grace Scrivens supporting her with figures of 2/8 off 3.4 overs and getting the last wicket to fall by trapping Maggie Clark lbw for a duck.

The low run rate in the chase and Amy Smith’s run-a-ball 26 (three fours) kept Australia in the game, but once she holed out to long-off off Josie Groves’ bowling with the score on 77, England had all but set a date with India in Sunday’s final at the same venue.

Brief scores:

India beat New Zealand by eight wickets. New Zealand 107/9 in 20 overs (Georgia Plimmer 35, Isabella Gaze 26; Parshavi Chopra 3-20, Shafali Verma 1-7) India 110/2 in 14.2 overs (Shweta Sehrawat 61 not out, Soumya Tiwari 22; Anna Browning 2-18).

England beat Australia by three runs. England 99 in 19.5 overs (Alexa Stonehouse 25, Grace Scrivens 20; Sianna Ginger 3/13, Maggie Clark 3/15) beat Australia 96 after 18.4 overs (Amy Smith 26, Claire Moore 20; Hannah Baker 3/10, Grace Scrivens 2/8).