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Mithali Remains Key Player for Us, Important to Use Her Smartly: Harmanpreet Kaur

India captain Harmanpreet Kaur praised stalwart Mithali Raj – who opened the innings and played a match winning knock of 56 off 47 balls – calling her a key component of the team going forward.

“Mithali is a key player and we have to use her in a smart way. Pakistan are a good bowling side, she’s (Mithali) very good against spin and that’s why we played her up there, it was a decision by the coach and me,” said Harmanpreet, in the post-match presentation.

Though India won the game quite easily in the end, they were let down by some poor fielding with three catches being dropped. Harmanpreet said that it is something the team has to work on.

“Disappointed with the way we fielded, in short format, it’s very important how we bowl or bat in the first six overs. The bowlers did well but we still have to improve. There is still a long way to go but I feel we are on the right track,” she added.

Meanwhile, Mithali Raj added that she was happy to perform whatever role the team required of her.

“I have always batted in the middle. I enjoy batting anywhere. Chasing puts a little pressure, but no matter what the challenge is, I always enjoy. I see there is no doubt that we will get to the semis, but as we go forward, we’ll be playing strong teams, so we will have to bring our A game in every match,” she added.

For Pakistan, who have now lost their first two matches, the prospect of an early exit is now all too real. Speaking after the match Captain Javeria Khan praised Bismah Maroof and Nida Dar for helping the team recover after an insipid start but was critical of the bowling effort her side put in.

“I’m glad that we managed to get a total on the board and we had a partnership, both (Maroof and Nida Dar) played really well,” she said. “These two have proven to the girls and everyone tried their best to do well for the team. Hopefully, we will learn from this going ahead and others stand up and perform.

“Our bowling effort was a bit disappointing despite being 10 runs short. It could have been a bit better, we took them until the 19th over, but we could have planned it better, if we had executed our plans, we might still have beaten them.”

Team Rankings

1 New Zealand 2764 126
2 India 2987 119
3 Australia 1844 108
4 England 3753 107
5 Pakistan 2481 92
FULL Ranking
1 New Zealand 2054 121
2 England 3793 119
3 Australia 3244 116
4 India 3624 113
5 South Africa 2267 103
FULL Ranking
1 England 7786 278
2 India 7093 273
3 New Zealand 6048 263
4 Pakistan 8883 261
5 South Africa 6640 246
FULL Ranking

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