The Indian women’s cricket team will return to international cricket after exactly a year since they faced Australia in the World T20 finals last year as they look to challenge South Africa at home.
In preparation for the next year’s 50-over World Cup in New Zealand, they will be squaring off in a series comprising as many as 5 ODIs followed by 3 T20Is, all matches to be played at Lucknow. With an ever-improving South African team coming from their triumph against Pakistan at home and a strong Indian side that lacks international exposure coming into this series, it promises to be a riveting battle.
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— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) March 5, 2021
The series will also see a few records being tumbled and a few milestones being achieved. Here, we look at the possible milestones that will be achieved in the ODI series.
1. Mithali Raj to become the first woman cricketer to score 7000 runs in Women’s ODIs:
Mithali Raj has been recalled to the Indian side for the ODIs as captain of the team. Aged 38 years, the Indian veteran holds the record for the highest number of runs in Women’s ODIs with 6888 runs from 209 ODIs and is heads and shoulders above the rest with the next best being the retired Charlotte Edwards of England who has 5992 runs to her name. She has another chance of making her country proud if she scores another 112 runs as she will become the first woman cricketer to reach 7000 runs in ODIs.
2. Harmanpreet Kaur would be playing her 100th ODI looking to reach 2500 runs in Women’s ODIs: The Indian vice-captain will also reach a personal landmark of representing the Indian side in 100 ODIs in the very first match she plays in the series. She has appeared in 99 ODIs till date. With 2372 runs to her name, she will be only the third Indian woman, after Mithali Raj and Anjum Chopra, to reach 2500 runs if she scores 128 runs in this series.
🚨 Milestone Alert 🚨
The Indian vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur will reach a personal landmark of representing the Indian side in 100 ODIs in the very first match she plays tomorrow.
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) March 6, 2021
3. Deepti Sharma to reach 1500 runs in Women’s ODIs: Also reaching a personal milestone in this series would be Deepti Sharma. The veteran all-rounder has played 54 ODIs for India scoring 1417 runs. Another 83 runs would help her reach a personal milestone of scoring 1500 runs in Women’s ODIs. She also has 64 wickets to her name and will look forward to adding more to her tally.
4. Poonam Yadav to play 50 ODIs for India: Poonam Yadav, India’s left-arm spinner, had quite a tournament in last year’s World T20 in Australia. She will look forward to adding to her tally of 72 wickets as she plays 50 ODIs for India. She has represented India in 46 ODIs to date.
5. Trisha Chetty may become the wicketkeeper with the highest number of stumpings in Women’s ODIs: With 48 stumpings in 114 ODIs, Trisha Chetty has an opportunity to claim 50 stumpings in her ODI career. If she goes one better, she will be the joint-highest in the record books for the most stumpings claimed in Women’s ODIs. She would also be the only active wicket-keeper with this milestone, the others being Anju Jain of India and Sarah Taylor of England. If she claims 4 victims through stumping, she will have a total of 52 stumping victims and would make her the wicketkeeper with the highest number of stumpings in Women’s ODIs.
6. Shabnim Ismail to claim 150 wickets: The South African speedster, Shabnim Ismail, can also reach a personal milestone of 150 wickets in Women’s ODIs if she claims 7 wickets in this series. She has a total of 143 wickets from 101 games and is sitting pretty as the leading wicket-taker for South Africa in Women’s ODIs. Another 7 would make her the first South African woman to reach 150 wickets in ODIs.
7. Laura Wolvaardt and Marizanne Kapp to join the 2000-run club:
This series also presents an opportunity for fellow South Africans Laura Wolvaardt and Marizanne Kapp to reach 2000 runs in women’s ODIs. Laura Wolvaardt, the opener, has 1996 runs from 53 games, and Marizanne Kapp, the experienced all-rounder has 1949 runs to her name from 110 games. While Wolvaardt needs just 4 runs to get to the 2000-run milestone, Marizanne Kapp needs another 51. Both will be looked to reach this milestone within these 5 games.
8. Highest number of 5-wicket haul in women’s ODIs: Sune Luus, the South African captain in this series, is an impressive all-rounder and has done well with the ball for her side. In 82 ODIs that she has played, she has scored 1212 runs while picking up 100 wickets. However, what is interesting to note is that she has claimed five wickets in an innings as many as 5 times. If she claims a five-wicket haul in this series she will be the joint-highest with 6 instances of 5-wicket hauls in ODIs, equaling West Indian Anisa Mohammed’s record.
The ODI series between India and South Africa is expected to be quite an enthralling series with many records set to be broken and many personal milestones to be achieved.
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