16-year-old Richa Ghosh became the first concussion substitute in a Twenty-20 International (T20I) match across men’s and women’s cricket when she replaced India’s wicketkeeper-batswoman Taniya Bhatia during the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup final on Sunday.
Coming into bat at three during India’s unsuccessful chase of 185 runs, Bhatia was hit on her in the second over off a delivery from Jess Jonassen. After leaving the field for concussion tests, Ghosh was declared as her replacement as she came to bat at eighth.
Though failing to cause much impact in the match, she batted for more than six overs and partnered Deepti Sharma for a stand of 30 runs during her play-a-ball innings of 18 runs.
Australia on Sunday defeated India by 85 runs to win their 5th ICC Women’s T20 World Cup title. Alyssa Healy and Beth Mooney shone with the bat earlier to help their team post a mammoth total of 184/4 before the bowlers bowled out India for a paltry total of 99.
Chasing, India never looked on course to reach the record-breaking total as their highest scorer of the tournament and number one T20I batswoman of the world Shafali Verma got out for two in the third delivery of the innings.
Wickets kept on falling at regular intervals and India lost the two most experienced batswomen, Smriti Mandhana and Harmanpreet Kaur, before the end of the first powerplay to give Australia the taste of the blood much before they had anticipated.
Deepti Sharma fought a lone battle at the other end and tried to provide some respite to India’s cause with her 28-run stand with Veda Krishnamurthy (19 off 24) and then with Ghosh.
However, Deepti’s 35-ball resilience which earned her 33 runs was only enough to make Australia wait for the glory but not defy them of it as she eventually fell short in the 17th over.