Potchefstroom [South Africa], January 30 (ANI): Following the ICC Women's U19 T20 World Cup triumph, India skipper Shafali Verma has now her eyes on the ICC Women's T20 World Cup, which will start from February 10 onwards.
Shafali played a pivotal role in helping India claim the inaugural U19 title with an emphatic seven-wicket victory over England on Sunday and the 19-year-old is now eyeing off a historic double.
Shafali is already an established star in India's senior side and wants to make the visit to South Africa even more worthwhile with another piece of silverware at next month's tournament.
"No, the big one also," Shafali was quoted as saying by ICC when asked if the U19 trophy was the only one she was looking to take back from South Africa.
"I am someone who focuses on the task at hand. When I entered the Under-19s, I only focused on winning the Under-19 Cup and we have won that today. ""I will look to take this winning confidence with me and win the senior World Cup. I will try and forget this and get involved with the senior setup and gel with the team and win the World Cup," Shafali said.
Shafali was part of India's squad that fell at the final hurdle at the 2020 T20 World Cup, when Australia defeated the Asian side by 85 runs in front of more than 85,000 fans at the MCG.
Shafli was 17 years old when that final took place in Melbourne almost three years ago, but the India star said she still feels the pain from the loss.
"Melbourne was a very emotional day for me in that final game, we did not win the game," Shafali recalled.
"When I joined the Under-19 team, I am just thinking, 'you know, we have to win this Cup.' I am just telling all the girls, 'We have to win this Cup, we are here for the Cup.""We had lost the World Cup and it was tears of sadness. Today, they were tears of happiness because we achieved what we came here for.""I tried controlling it but it could not happen. I will look at this as a big achievement and look to use this to learn something more. I will try to score more runs for India and am not going to be satisfied with this Cup. This is just the beginning."Shafali finished the U19 event as the third leading run-scorer with a total of 172 runs, with teammate and fellow opener Shweta Sehrawat topping the charts with a whopping 297 runs.
Spinners Parshavi Chopra (12 wickets) and Mannat Kashyap (nine) were among the leading wicket-takers at the tournament and India coach Nooshin Al Khadeer said there was even contributions from the entire squad.
"The most special thing about (this group) is the belief," said the coach.
"It was a bad game against Australia but the way they have gathered and played thereafter, all credit to the vibes we have. We kept it very simple; we thought we would just play proper cricket and simple cricket, and we would achieve this.""We have a good future back in India," concluded the coach.
Chasing a target of 69, India captain Shafali Verma started their world cup winning chase by smashing a beautiful four on Hannah Baker's delivery. Baker then gave her team a big breakthrough as she dismissed Shafali for 15 off 11. England bowlers tried to turn the game back as captain Grace Scrivens removed dangerous batter Shweta Sehrawat for 5 runs of 6 balls.
The right-handed batter Gongadi Trisha then came out to bat. Soumya Tiwari played some aggressive shots while Trisha played the anchor role. After 10 overs India needed 21 runs in 60 balls to win. Gongadi Trisha then hammered Ellie Anderson for back-to-back fours.
In the 13th over of the innings, Alexa Stonehouse dismissed batter Gongadi Trisha for 24 off 29 deliveries. Soumya Tiwari then led Team India to clinch the inaugural U19 Women's T20 World Cup title beating England by seven wickets.
Earlier, opting to field first, Indian bowlers completely dominated the game from the beginning against England in the summit clash. Titas Sadhu provided India with their first wicket of the innings, dismissing England opener Liberty Heap on a two-ball duck.
Grace Scrivens and Niamh Fiona Holland tried to ease the pressure as they played some boundary shots. However, Holland could not stay for long on the crease as she was sent back to the pavilion.
After Holland's wicket, England's batters lost their wicket at regular intervals. India set the tone early with the new ball and gave blows to the England Women Under-19 at regular intervals to bundle them for 68.
Titas Sadhu, Archana Devi and Parshavi Chopra bagged two wickets respectively. Ryana Macdonald Gay scored the highest for England with 19 runs off 24 balls.
Brief score: England 68 in 17.1 overs (Ryana Macdonald Gay 19, Alexa Stonehouse 11; Titas Sadhu 2-6) vs India 69-3 in 14 overs (Soumya Tiwari 24, Gongadi Trisha 24; Hannah Baker 1-13). (ANI)