Ever since the Women’s Cricket World Cup was first introduced back in 1973 it’s been a title that India has been desperate to win. In 2017 they came tantalizingly close, losing to England by just nine runs. But there are high hopes that 2021 could be their tournament if things go their way.
With the 2021 ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup due to get underway at Eden Park in Auckland on February 6th 2021 and conclude with the grand final at the Hagley Oval, Christchurch a month later, it promises to be one of the most exciting tournaments yet.
This is especially true as women’s cricket has never before had such a high profile with many countries’ players becoming nearly as famous as their male counterparts. The question is whether India really does have what it takes to beat the nine other teams in contention for the title.
It’s certainly true that the competition will be tough with England and Australia, in particular, being acknowledged as the best two teams on paper. Nor can New Zealand be discounted, especially as they will have home advantage and a loyal, vociferous following.
Then there’s the matter of the conditions. Any team that travels from the sub-continent to New Zealand is undoubtedly moving out of their comfort zone to play on greener, softer wickets than commonly experienced at home. The men’s team is known to struggle abroad but, that said, India women’s near-miss at Lord’s in 2017 did come after a typically rainy British summer. So they are certainly capable of performing in alien conditions.
It is certainly the hope of the nation that India will win the 2021 World Cup, although they won’t go into the tournament as favourites like the men’s team are currently for the 2023 World Cup as can be seen when you visit this site. The fact that you can bet on much more than just the result of a particular match makes it even more appealing.
Of course, what’s going to really dictate how well the team does is the performance of key players.
The pick of the batters is probably Smriti Mandhana. Her international career began in 2013 and she played her first test in 2014 against England. Among the records she holds are for the fastest 50 in T20 cricket taking just 24 balls, and in 2018 she became only the third female player to score over 2000 runs in ODI internationals.
Spearheading the bowling attack will probably be Poonam Yadav who, since her debut in 2013, has gone from strength to strength. She’s India’s all-time top wicket-taker in T20s with a total of 94 and has taken 72 in ODIs at an average of 20.84. She will undoubtedly be looking to improve on this in New Zealand.
The team is also blessed with several all-rounders with Deepti Sharma being the pick of them. With career- best bowling figures of 6-20 and a high score of 188, which she made in a world record partnership of 320 with Punam Raut, she’s certainly the one to watch.
So, it all adds up to a team with very good prospects. Whether they come to fruition we’ll discover in March next year. Regardless of what happens, we know that India wants to take their first win of the World Cup back home and they won’t let any obstacles stop them.
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