Harmanpreet Kaur to miss 1st T20I against South Africa due to injury, Smriti Mandhana to Lead

Disappointment pours in for the Indian team as Harmanpreet Kaur misses out on the T20I opener against South Africa.

 

Harmanpreet Kaur
Harmanpreet Kaur. Pic Credits: Getty Images

 

India faces a setback before even facing South Africa in the T20I series as captain Harmanpreet Kaur has been ruled out of the first T20I game due to her injury sustained in the 5th and Final ODI played on 17th March.

Kaur, who faced a Grade 1 hip-strain during the 5th ODI against South Africa on 17th March, had to walk back from the game due to a strain during the 31st over, just when she, alongside Skipper Mithali Raj, had started to launch the game for India.

“She has been ruled out of tomorrow’s match and the rest of the updates on her injury will be given by the medical team and the team management. It will be better for them to speak about it rather than me,” Mandhana informed during a virtual press conference.

Losing the ODI series to South Africa by 4-1, Mandhana said that their focus has shifted to the T20I series and that they’ve left the ODI result in the past.

“We will try to forget the ODIs and focus on the T20 series. Yes, the ODI series was a disappointment but we need to forget that and move ahead. Some new faces have come in the team, so we need to think fresh,” Mandhana said.

When asked about the team’s strategy for the upcoming series, Mandhana said: “We had a discussion on how to go about our preparation, what went wrong in the ODI series and how to go forward. We now need to concentrate on the T20s. We are now looking at the ODI series as a preparation for the T20 series.”

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Talking about the Indian side’s fielding, she said-

“We have been in the process in the last 3-4 years. Few catches have dropped in the ODIs, but we need to get on with a fresh mind in the T20 series and leave behind the ODI series disappointment.”

Mandhana feels that the spinners in the Indian side are the biggest advantage for the team, who need to buckle up for the T20 series.

“Spinners are our biggest strength. Definitely, they (spinners) were not bad but inconsistent in their bowling (in the ODI series). But if we keep pitching the ball in the same areas, it will become difficult for batters,” she concluded.

The Indian side will now be led by Smriti Mandhana for the first T20I scheduled tomorrow at 6:50 pm IST.

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