Ellyse Perry’s prediction for RCB teammate Smriti Mandhana comes true

The Indian women’s cricket team, led by skipper Harmanpreet Kaur, is hosting South Africa for a multi-format series from June 16 to July 9. India has already sealed the three-match One-Day Internationals (ODIs) series 2-0. Smriti Mandhana has significantly contributed to this achievement with her back-to-back centuries and her maiden international wicket at M. Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru.

Ellyse Perry's prediction for RCB teammate Smriti Mandhana comes true
Ellyse Perry’s prediction for RCB teammate Smriti Mandhana comes true

During the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL) around March last year, Mandhana faced a lean patch in her batting and captaincy as Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) suffered five straight defeats in the tournament. During that challenging period, the legendary Australian player Ellyse Perry supported the then-under-fire RCB skipper Smriti Mandhana, who was not performing to her potential in the 2023 WPL season.

Perry hoped the Indian would overcome this phase and emerge as a “better version” of herself. Regarding Mandhana’s performance that season, Perry said, “I think she’s a great captain too. She just needs a chance to find her feet in the tournament and she will no doubt. But the bigger picture (is), it’s just going to mean we are going to see an even better version of Smriti after this.”

Since then, Perry’s prediction has become evident as Mandhana has had a great year in all formats, including notable performances for Southern Brave in The Hundred 2023, scoring 46 (45) in the final of the Asian Games in September 2023 at Hangzhou, and delivering good knocks against England and Australia at home in late 2023 and early 2024.

In the second WPL season, both as captain and batter, Mandhana had an outstanding year with Royal Challengers Bangalore, leading them to become champions and scoring a total of 300 runs in the season.

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Following the 2024 WPL, her performance in the T20I series against Bangladesh was satisfactory. Perry’s quote resonated during the 2nd ODI on the ongoing home series when she notched up back-to-back tons, while rewriting many other records, as we indeed are seeing a better version of Smriti Mandhana, especially with her achieving her personal best score in ODIs and securing consecutive hundreds in the series against South Africa.

This series against South Africa at home has been exceptional for Mandhana, marked by her seventh ODI century and her maiden wicket in international cricket.

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