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Batting Worries For Harmanpreet and Co. as South Africa Look to Level Series

Captain Harmanpreet Kaur along with ace spinner Deepti Sharma were the key factors when the Indian women’s cricket team beat their South African counterparts in the first T20I at Lalabhai Contractor Stadium on Tuesday. And after a washout in the second T20I, India will be hoping the same key figures can provide the fireworks as they look to take an unassailable lead in the third T20I in Surat on Sunday.

Cricketnext Staff |September 29, 2019, 11:07 AM IST
Batting Worries For Harmanpreet and Co. as South Africa Look to Level Series

Captain Harmanpreet Kaur along with ace spinner Deepti Sharma were the key factors when the Indian women’s cricket team beat their South African counterparts in the first T20I at Lalabhai Contractor Stadium on Tuesday. And after a washout in the second T20I, India will be hoping the same key figures can provide the fireworks as they look to take an unassailable lead in the third T20I in Surat on Sunday (September 29).

For WV Raman’s side the tactics are likely to be similar with Deepti Sharma, Poonam Yadav, Radha Yadav and possibly Harmanpreet Kaur tasked with picking the bulk of the South African wickets. In the first game, the four spinners finished with eight wickets amongst themselves while Shikha Pandey accounted for the other two.

The worry for India will however be in the batting department, especially with the T20 World Cup (February 21 – March 8, 2020) in Australia. The newcomer Shafali Verma had the worst possible start to her international career as she was dismissed for a duck, but it is the inability to convert starts for the more experienced players that will be the cause for concern.

Smriti Mandhana and Jemimah Rodrigues, both of whom have had recent KSL stints, will need to do better than the last Tuesday (September 24) alongside Harmanpreet in at number 4. Deepti and Veda Krishnamurthy also failed to get a move on, and will look to improve on Sunday.

For the visiting Proteas, Mignon De Preez smashed a half-century (59 off 43 balls) as they came to within 11 runs of a win in the first game. A little more resistance against the Indian spinners could have put the hosts in trouble.

But the inexperienced side will need Du Preez and stand-in skipper Sune Luus to step up and lead the way with the regular skipper Dane van Niekerk unavailable.

However with heavy rains and thunderstorms predicted for Sunday in Surat, the scenario could change drastically as a wet ball will make life difficult for the spinners, hampering India’s plans.

Indian women’s squad for first three T20Is: Harmanpreet Kaur (C), Smriti Mandhana (VC), Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Poonam Yadav, Shikha Pandey, Arundhati Reddy, Pooja Vastrakar, Radha Yadav, Veda Krishnamurthy, Harleen Deol, Anuja Patil, Shafali Verma, Mansi Joshi.

South Africa women’s squad: Sune Luus (c), Anneke Bosch, Tasmin Brits, Nadine de Klerk, Shabnim Ismail, Sinalo Jafta, Ayabonga Khaka, Lara Goodall, Lizelle Lee, Nonkululeko Mlaba, Tumi Sekhukhune, Nondumiso Shangase, Mignon du Preez, Lara Wolvaardt.​

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4 Australia 5543 111
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2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
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