The first of the three-match T20I series between India and Australia was played on Thursday at the Carrara Oval, Queensland. The two teams last met in a T20I on March 8, 2020 when they played the finals of the World T20 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Going into the first T20I of the bilateral series, India and Australia announced a couple of debutants each. The four debutants are Yastika Bhatia, Renuka Singh Thakur, Hannah Darlington, and Tahlia McGrath.
Who is Yastika Bhatia:
The elegant left-hand bat from Baroda made her ODI debut against Australia in this multi-format series and playing all three matches, she scored 102 runs, including a half-century. After a good performance in ODIs, the 21-year old was awarded a Test cap. She is strong on the back foot and has the ability to cut and pull the ball with ease. She is pleasing to the eyes and there is no doubt that she has a bright future ahead of her. Given her solid performances in the ODIs and a decent outing in the Test, Yastika makes her T20I debut.
Who is Renuka Singh Thakur:
The right-arm speedster from Himachal Pradesh is known for her raw pace and effective in-swingers. She is nippy and can give any batter run for her money. After a successful domestic season, the 25-year old received an India call for this multi-format series against Australia. She was the leading wicket-taker in the 2019–20 Senior Women’s One Day League, with 23 dismissals. Though she was not a part of the ODI and Test squad, she is a part of the T20I squad and she makes her debut in the first T20I itself.
Who is Hannah Darlington:
The 19-year old right-arm seamer made her ODI debut in this multi-format series against India. She featured in a couple of ODIs and picked up as many wickets. With her decent performance in the 50-over format, the Australian quickly bagged her T20I cap during the first match. Given that she plays for Sydney Thunder in the WBBL, the speedster does have some experience of playing T20s alongside some great international players.
Who is Tahlia McGrath:
This talented all-rounder made her debut for Australia in 2016 but it took five long years for the 25-year old to make her T20I debut. The right-hand bat and right-arm quick made her T20I debut against India during the ongoing multi-format series. So far, she has featured in 8 ODIs and 2 Tests. With the ball, she has 8 international wickets and 254 international runs. She represents Adelaide Strikers in the WBBL and has been a part of the squad since 2018.
I am a former cricketer having represented Mumbai University at All India University level. I was a part of MCA probables for the U-19 and U-23 age group. I have been an avid cricket writer for the last five years. Currently I am pursuing my Ph.D from IIT Bombay.