“The bowling is a bit of a concern before the World Cup”, says Mithali Raj

India women’s cricket team is yet to open its victory count for the year. The team that is on the tour of New Zealand, has lost the only T20I as well as the 4 ODIs that have been played till now. Despite the toss going Skipper Mithali Raj’s way the majority of the time and the batters putting up a defendable total on the board, the bowling unit has failed to execute its plan well. A total 270 in the 2nd ODI while 279 in the 3rd looks to be a defendable one with the experienced bowling line up India comprises but the White Ferns have successfully chased down the target on both occasions.

 

Indian Bowlers celebrating a wicket during ODI series against New Zealand. PC: PhotosportNZ / Twitter
Indian Bowlers celebrating a wicket during ODI series against New Zealand. PC: PhotosportNZ / Twitter

 

This is an area of immediate concern with the 2022 ICC Women’s World Cup starting next week where the 2017 Runners-Up take on Pakistan in their opening match on March 6. Admitting the same during the post-match presentation after the 4th ODI on Tuesday, Mithali Raj said:

“We have definitely been trying a few combinations with the seam and spin attack. To be honest, bowling is a bit of a concern before the World Cup,” she said.

“We want all our main bowlers to get their rhythm. We are adapting to the conditions and to the open ground and the breeze but there are spells where the bowlers have bowled well but we are not consistent, and it is something that we are looking to improve.” the all-time leading run-scorer of women’s ODI further added.

 

India's Deepti Sharma celebrating a Wicket against New Zealand. PC: BCCIWomen / Twitter
India’s Deepti Sharma celebrating a Wicket against New Zealand. PC: BCCIWomen / Twitter

 

The legendary captain further praised emerging talent Richa Ghosh with whom she recorded a 50+ partnership during the 4th ODI with the latter smashing the fastest half-century by an Indian woman in ODIs.

“I was just looking at the shots and the way she (Richa) went about her batting, she is very talented and the future for India,” she said

White Ferns Skipper Sophie Devine who appeared to be quite impressed with her team’s performance ahead of the big tournament, though pointed out the need for a bit of improvement in Fielding as well as adjusting the bowling plans.

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“It was another complete performance from us,”

“With the bat, we showed real intent. Good experience (shortened game) with the World Cup coming up. It was a great opportunity for us. The batters played to their strengths. 191 was probably above-par.”

“The fielding is an area where we’ve missed a few, that’s an area where we can probably save another 10-15 runs. With the bowling, at times, we have been slow to change our plans. We have to adapt quicker. I had belief in this group forever, nice to see people are seeing that. We are seeing the results now, there’s real confidence and belief. It’s perfect timing with the World Cup just around the corner”, Devine added

Host New Zealand will be in action in the inaugural match of the tournament on March 4 where they will compete against West Indies at Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui.

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2) Mithali Raj has the record of ___ 50+ scores in consecutive ODI Innings.

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3) In which year, was Mithali Raj awarded India's highest sporting honor, Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award?

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Author of the poetry book ‘The Scent of Rhythm’, I am a passionate writer and a Sports enthusiast who writes on Cricket and plays Badminton.

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