India maintained their dominance in the tournament with an eight-wicket demolition of a self-destructive Sri Lanka in the title race for their seventh title in eight editions.
Sri Lanka, playing in their first tournament final in 14 years, imploded after opting to bat on a pitch that was slow and offered innings. They could only manage 65 for nine which bowled India out in 8.3 overs. Smriti Mandhana hit a sublime 51 not out from 25 balls.
“We have to credit our bowlers. Our fielding unit was good from ball one and we discussed that we should not give away easy runs. You have to read the wicket and accordingly put the fielders in the right positions,” Harmanpreet said at the presentation ceremony said.
“We read the wicket well and positioned fielders accordingly. We didn’t look at the scoreboard but just decided our five-over targets. We never thought about what the total was on the board and batted accordingly.”
Player of the Match Renuka Singh sent back Hasini Perera on the very first ball she faced. The pacer finished with excellent figures of 3/5 in the final.
“Very happy because the last few matches I have not bowled well. I trained with my trainer and the staff and they really helped me get my rhythm back.
“Just focused on my basics and achieved success. My whole team supported me very well and credit must go to my captain, coach and the staff,” said Renuka.
All-rounder Deepti Sharma, who gave away just seven runs in her four overs, was named the Player of the Series.
“Very happy with the way we performed as a unit from the first game until today. We executed what was discussed in the meeting. I just backed my strengths and those things helped me a lot in this tournament.
“The wickets were slow and before this tournament I worked a lot on my batting and those sessions really helped me. This win also gives us a lot of confidence in the upcoming series,” said Deepti.
After an outing in which her team just didn’t turn up, Sri Lanka captain Chamari Athapaththu expressed her disappointment, although she was pleased with the bowlers.
“Tough day as a team, not a good batting performance in the finals and I’m really upset today. Next we have T20 World Cup and we’ve learned a lot in this tournament and as a batting unit we have to stick to our plans I’m very happy with my bowling unit.
“We have some young players and hope they continue their performances as a batting unit. We don’t have many experienced players but they are good players and think they will play a lot of cricket in the future,” said Chamari. .
The Indians bowled with discipline but poor stroke selection contributed more to Sri Lanka’s steep slide. After a memorable win over Pakistan in the semi-finals, the occasion seemed to get the better of Sri Lanka.