Jhulan Goswami, India's most successful pacer in One-Day Internationals, believes that the way the Indian side has gone about in the ongoing ICC Women's World T20 there is every chance they can bring the cup home for the very first time.
The Harmanpreet Kaur-led side has qualified for the semifinals of the World T20 for the first time in eight years and Goswami felt that if the side could hold their nerves in crunch stages a win could very well be achieved.
"It’s always great to reach the last-four stage. The team looks confident and each one has played her part so far,” Goswami was quoted by Times Of India.
“There is bound to be pressure when you are playing a semifinal. If the girls hold their nerve and express themselves freely, I see no reason why they can’t bring the Cup home."
Goswami, who retired from Twenty20 Internationals in August this year was the captain the last time India qualified for the last-four back in 2010. She admitted that it was a different feeling watching the game from the sidelines rather than being actively involved in the middle, but denied having any withdrawal symptoms.
“All these years, I was involved in the action but this time I am following the matches purely as a fan,” said Goswami who is preparing for the upcoming season.
“I am still actively playing cricket. It’s not that I am missing the action but for the first time I am on the other side of the boundary rope."
The 35-year-old credited newly-appointed head coach Ramesh Powar for his role in bringing the team together and giving them the license to play their natural game. She was also of the opinion that Mithali Raj, who has scored back-to-back fifties - first against Pakistan and then Ireland - should continue opening the batting.
“Since Ramesh took over as the coach, he has given the players the license to play their natural game. The girls are playing fearless cricket. This attitude has boosted the team," she said.
“Ramesh has also ensured that there weren’t too many changes in the playing XI right through the qualifying stage. This helped the team settle down as a unit."
Meanwhile, the Indian side have suffered a jolt ahead of the all-important group-stage clash against Australia with pacer Pooja Vastrakar being ruled out with an injury that she suffered during a pre-tournament practice game. Speedster Devika Vaidya has been named as her replacement.
Vastrakar, who is India's most-capped pacer, was returning after an ankle injury that had forced her out of the Women's Challenger trophy and series against Sri Lanka.