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Harmanpreet Kaur

Indian Women's Cricket Team
Indian Women's Cricket Team. Image Credits: Twitter
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BCCI Announced India Women Squad For World Cup 2022

BCCI on Thursday announced India women’s squad for ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 and the New Zealand series. One of the biggest surprises was the omission of batter Jemimah Rodrigues, who had been an integral part of the team until India’s last limited-overs assignment in Australia.

The All-India Women’s Selection Committee of BCCI on Wednesday picked the squad for the ICC Women’s World Cup 2022. Team India play their first World Cup fixture against Pakistan on March 6th, 2022 at the Bay Oval, Tauranga. The squad announced by BCCI will also feature in the 5-match ODI series against New Zealand starting from 11th February 2022.

BCCI (File Photo| PTI)
BCCI (File Photo| PTI)

BCCI Announced India Women’s Squad For 2022 Women’s World Cup And 5 ODIs vs NZ; Mithali Raj To Lead While Jemimah Rodrigues And Shikha Pandey Misses Out

Mithali Raj will lead the 15-member squad with Harmanpreet Kaur named as her deputy. Shikha Pandey also remains absent in the Indian squad, while Sneh Rana – who impressed with her all-around skills across formats in 2021 retains her place in the side.

Left-arm spinner Ekta Bisht, opening batter Jemimah Rodrigues, and fast bowler Shikha Pandey are not included in the 15-member squad for the Women’s World Cup. Jemimah Rodrigues failed to score in double digits during the last year in all her international assignments, but she was in good touch during The Hundred in England and the subsequent Big Bash League in Australia. Shikha Pandey was similarly off-colour during her national duties.

Mithali Raj - Twitter
Mithali Raj – Twitter

Talking of the World Cup schedule, after facing Pakistan on 6th March, India women will rub shoulders against New Zealand (March 10), West Indies (March 12), England (March 16), Australia (March 19), Bangladesh (March 22), and South Africa (March 27) in the group stage.

Team India for 5 ODIs against NZ & ICC Women’s World Cup, 2022: Mithali Raj (Captain), Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh (wicket-keeper), Sneh Rana, Jhulan Goswami, Pooja Vastrakar, Meghna Singh, Renuka Singh Thakur, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav.

Standby Players: Sabbhineni Meghana, Ekta Bisht, Simran Dil Bahadur.

ICC Women’s World Cup 2022 – India’s fixtures
S.No. Date Against Venue
1 March 6th Pakistan Bay Oval, Tauranga
2 March 10th New Zealand Seddon Park, Hamilton
3 March 12th West Indies Seddon Park, Hamilton
4 March 16th England Bay Oval, Tauranga
5 March 19th Australia Eden Park, Auckland
6 March 22nd Bangladesh Seddon Park, Hamilton
7 March 27th South Africa Hagley Oval, Christchurch

BCCI Also Announced A 16 Member Squad For A One-Off T20I Against New Zealand

The All-India Women’s Selection Committee also picked the squad for the one-off T20I against New Zealand scheduled to be played on 9th February 2022. BCCI announced a 16-member squad. Harmanpreet Kaur will lead in the lone T20 International against New Zealand to be played on February 9 before the ODIs.

Harmanpreet Kaur looks on during the match BCCI
Harmanpreet Kaur looks on during the match— BCCI

India Women’s squad for one-off T20I: Harmanpreet Kaur (Captain), Smriti Mandhana (vice-captain), Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh (wicket-keeper), Sneh Rana, Pooja Vastrakar, Meghna Singh, Renuka Singh Thakur, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Ekta Bisht, S. Meghna, Simran Dil Bahadur.

Team India’s tour of New Zealand (Senior Women) – 2022
S.No. Date Match Venue
1 February 9th Only T20I McLean Park, Napier
2 February 11th 1st ODI McLean Park, Napier
3 February 14th 2nd ODI Saxton Oval, Nelson
4 February 16th 3rd ODI Saxton Oval, Nelson
5 February 22nd 4th ODI John Davies Oval, Queenstown
6 February 24th 5th ODI John Davies Oval, Queenstown
Anjum Chopra
Anjum Chopra
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Anjum Chopra Calls For A Structured Plan To Initiate Women’s IPL Immediately

Anjum Chopra believes that while the BCCI has shown intent, having announced a four-team Women’s T20 Challenge last season before it was cancelled owing to the pandemic, there is a gap with its execution due to their conviction in going forward.

Former Indian captain Anjum Chopra, the cricketer-turned-commentator, also called for a ‘structured plan for initiating a women’s IPL’ with just four or five teams, explaining why the board might benefit from starting the tournament without any further delay.

Former India cricketer Anjum Chopra. DC File Photo
Former India cricketer Anjum Chopra. DC File Photo

Anjum Chopra Is In Favour Of A Shorter IPL For Women Which Should Start Immediately After India Women Were Successful In Women’s Big Bash League

Following their participation in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL), women’s cricket in India has successfully hit a new high. And if that wasn’t enough, the fact that most of the players returned an impressive show in the tournament adds to it.

As many as eight Indian players have returned home, having gained from the rich experience of playing in one of the biggest franchise T20 cricket leagues in the world, and leading the way was Harmanpreet Kaur, who emerged as the biggest star, winning the Player of the Tournament honour following her all-round brilliance for the Melbourne Renegades in Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL).

The India captain peeled off 399 runs at 66.50 and a strike rate of 135.25, including three match-winning half-centuries and was a huge asset with the ball grabbing 15 wickets.

Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI
Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI

Accompanying her in setting the WBBL on fire was her India teammate Smriti Mandhana, who smashed a record century for Sydney Thunder. It was accompanied by decent outings by Jemimah Rodrigues, Radha Yadav, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh, Poonam Yadav and Shafali Verma, as the chorus has only grown louder in support of a women’s Indian Premier League with several current and former players joining in the debate.

” Women’s IPL… it’s a very interesting stage. I understand the chorus is happening and people are saying that it should happen especially after Harmanpreet (Kaur) won the Player of the Tournament (Women’s Big Bash League) award. All these are absolutely fine, ” said Anjum Chopra on Women’s IPL after outstanding performances from women cricketers in Women’s Big Bash League

“The day the BCCI decides to conduct a Women’s IPL it will happen, the point is, the resistance is not only because they do not want to start it or they do not want a women’s tournament. I think there might be some other issues or questions on how it can be done and how it can be handled. We can of course have a shorter version of the IPL, maybe with 4 or 5 proper teams with international players, ” said Anjum Chopra on Women’s IPL.

“IPL men’s tournament is now on a very auto-pilot stage. And people like Venkatesh Iyer have been chosen for the Indian team straightaway from a seven-match performance in IPL 2021. There was a time when players were judged by their performance in a season, but now players are selected based on their performance in half a season,” said Anjum Chopra on selection in national team after decent outings in men’s IPL. 

“Many years ago, not many people know about it but people in the BCCI do know, I have already worked on it. 4 or 5 teams will definitely make a lot of sense. Maybe an administrator is assigned.  You can have the same people running the Women’s event as well,” said Anjum Chopra.

“But probably they know the answer better as to whether they do need a separate team altogether. No cricket organisation has so much manpower. So, it is not about intent with the BCCI not wanting to initiate it. Let’s not forget that they had proposed a four-team Women’s T20 Challenge event last season and would have happened in May had the pandemic not hit. So that was already announced,” Anjum Chopra further said.

“It’s not the franchises in India that do not want to do a Women’s IPL. It’s the parent body that needs to lead the way. If the BCCI can increase the size of the IPL from 8 to 10, I’m sure we can have a structured plan for initiating a women’s IPL.

“It may not be eight teams to 10 teams, it can be just five or six or even four teams. But in a very structured manner. But the benefit that BCCI will have now is that these women’s T20 leagues have already mushroomed around the world, whether it is the Women’s Big Bash or the Kia Super League. So it’s all about intent and execution.”

Earlier, the BCCI had announced a four-team Women’s T20 Challenge (WT20C) for last season, but it was cancelled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The WT20C began as a one-off exhibition match in 2018 before becoming a three-team, four-match event in the next two years. It has also been given an official T20 status.

Anjum Chopra: Harmanpreet Kaur Emerging Out Of Her Injuries And Is Contributing With Bat And Ball

Also, with Harmanpreet Kaur recently winning the Player of the Tournament in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL), calls for a women’s IPL have increased in India.

“Didn’t see all of her innings though, but she scored runs at a strike rate of over 130 which is good for me. But what is heartening to see is that she is emerging out of her injuries that she has been picking up over the last couple of years and she has come back to striking the ball in a way she has been known best. She is contributing with the bat and ball. And that’s a very good sign for Indian cricket and for Harmanpreet.”

“You need scores to back yourself now. She had a few good performances but she hasn’t had an impactful performance. Picking up the player of the tournament award is very special for any player. And others have also done well. For Harmanpreet I hope she is ready to carry this form as long as possible for the Indian team as well.” said Anjum Chopra on Harmanpreet Kaur.

Harmanpreet Kaur of Melbourne Renegades. Photo- Getty
Harmanpreet Kaur of Melbourne Renegades. Photo- Getty

“Jemimah batted well, very good. Smriti Mandhana scored a record century, again very impressive. So all these things are absolutely essential for Indian cricket that these players will come back with a valuable experience and exposure in a tough situation.

“Harmanpreet, who won the Player of the Tournament award, still has to play a match-winning knock in 50-over cricket which is very different to T20 cricket,” maintained Anjum Chopra on performances from Indian women cricketers in Women’s Big Bash League.

“Franchise cricket is very different from international cricket and how players are utilized in franchise cricket is up to them and how the player shapes up.. I was actually not surprised that she (Shafali Verma) was used in different conditions. At least they gave her an opportunity to be part of the XI because we have seen in the IPL that if a player doesn’t perform in two games, then there is no coming back,”Anjum Chopra concluded.

Anjum Chopra also said that the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises want Women’s IPL, but the parent body will have to make way for it. She also mentioned that BCCI can definitely organise a women’s IPL with 5 or 6 teams if they can increase the number of teams in the men’s IPL.

Sydney Thunder: Smriti Mandhana, Deepti Sharma

Melbourne Renegades: Harmanpreet Kaur, Jemimah Rodrigues

Hobart Hurricanes: Richa Ghosh

Brisbane Heat: Poonam Yadav

Sydney Sixers: Radha Yadav, Shafali Verma

The 2021 edition of Women's Big Bash League, WBBL 2021will begin on October 14 in Hobart | Photo: Cricket Australia
The 2021 edition of Women's Big Bash League, WBBL 2021will begin on October 14 in Hobart | Photo: Cricket Australia
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WBBL 07 Inaugural Week Uncertain After Hobert’s 3 Day Lockdown For COVID-19

WBBL 07 – The Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) inaugural week is facing uncertainty after Hobart was put under a three-day lockdown on Friday due to surging Covid-19 cases in Tasmania.

The seventh edition of the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL 07), kickstarting on Thursday, will feature as many as eight Indian players – the highest number so far in the history of the Australian tournament. It is a fitting testament to the development of the young talent in the last T20 World Cup’s runners-up.

WBBL 07- Women's Big Bash League 2021
WBBL 07- Women’s Big Bash League 2021

WBBL 07- The Women’s Big Bash League’s Inaugural Week Uncertain As Hobart Goes Under A 3 Day Lockdown For Increase In Rising Covid-19 Cases

WBBL 07 is under uncertainty as Hobart goes under a three-day Lockdown owing to the rising Covid-19 cases in Tasmania on Friday. Cricket Australia has stated that they are working on a contingency plan.

Opener Smriti Mandhana, off-spinning all-rounder Deepti Sharma (Sydney Thunder), opener Shafali Verma, left-arm spinner Radha Yadav (Sydney Sixers), batters Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur (Melbourne Renegades) keeper-bat Richa Ghosh (Hobart Hurricanes), and leg-spinner Poonam Yadav (Brisbane Heat) are the eight Indians set to feature in WBBL 07.

“Four WBBL-07 games are scheduled to be played at Blundstone Arena (in Hobart) across Saturday and Sunday, with Tasmanian Premier Peter Gutwein suggesting crowds will now not be able to attend those matches,” a report said on Friday, adding that Cricket Australia (CA) was in talks with the Tasmanian government after the flash lockdown was imposed.

The Sydney Sixers won the WBBL opener in Hobart on Thursday night, but doubts have been cast over upcoming games there.
The Sydney Sixers won the WBBL opener in Hobart on Thursday night, but doubts have been cast over upcoming games there. Photograph: Sarah Reed/Getty Images

The report said that CA and the Tasmanian government were working on “a contingency plan”, adding that the Australian cricket’s governing body had informed the state government authorities that all players and staff members had received COVID-19 vaccinations.

During a press conference on Friday, Gutwein was quoted as saying that, “Bearing in mind there are national and international matters to consider here in terms of the broadcast, if they do go ahead they would go ahead with no crowd and with the players remaining in a bubble.”

Cricket Australia will attempt to push on with the WBBL 07 in Hobart this weekend, despite Tasmania’s capital being plunged into a snap three-day lockdown on Friday. Just a day after Sydney Sixers beat Melbourne Stars in the first game of the tournament, Cricket Australia was left sweating on fears of a potential Covid-19 outbreak in southern Tasmania.

The next four games are scheduled to be played in Hobart this weekend, with two double-headers at Blundstone Arena. In the best-case scenario for Cricket Australia, those games at Hobart will now be played without crowds.

Cricket Australia Working With Tasmanian Government On Options For WBBL 07 Matches At Hobart

A total of eight Indian players, including Smriti Mandhana, are playing in the WBBL 07, and seven of the eight WBBL sides are already in Tasmania.

“Perth Scorchers were due to fly in (later) on Friday for their first match against Brisbane Heat on October 17 but confirmed they would remain in Western Australia until more information was available,” the report added.

“Also, Hurricanes are scheduled to play the Renegades on Saturday afternoon, before the Strikers meet the Thunder on Saturday night. The Hurricanes then back up against the Sixers on Sunday morning, before the Heat play the Scorchers,” the report said.

Alyssa Healy of the Sixers on her way to making 57 in the opening Women's Big Bash League match of the season. Photograph: Steve Bell/Getty Images
Alyssa Healy of the Sixers is on her way to making 57 in the opening Women’s Big Bash League match of the season. Photograph: Steve Bell/Getty Images

“The health and safety of our players, staff, match officials and partners, along with that of the wider community, remains our top priority,” CA said in a statement, adding, “We are currently working with the Tasmanian Government on options for the upcoming Weber WBBL|07 matches at Blundstone Arena, Hobart this weekend.”

“The next matches are not due to be played until October 19, after the scheduled end of the lockdown on Monday evening,” the report added.

More than 20 games are scheduled to be held in Tasmania over the next two-and-a-half weeks, in a bid to begin the WBBL 07 during Sydney and Melbourne’s lockdowns. The Perth Scorchers have already confirmed they will remain in Western Australia until at least Saturday, pushing back their flight on Friday. They are due to face Brisbane Heat on Sunday morning. All of the other seven teams are believed to already be in Hobart.

Alyssa Healy started the WBBL 07 season superbly as she guided the Sydney Sixers to a six-wicket win over the Melbourne Stars in Hobart. Consistent rainfall pushed back the start of Thursday night’s tournament opener at Blundstone Arena, reducing the match to 11 overs aside. Alyssa Healy whacked 57 from 27 deliveries, including four fours in a row off rookie Tess Flintoff in the third over, as the Sydney Sixers chased down the 100-run target with four balls to spare.

Smriti Mandhana (Source: AP)
Smriti Mandhana (Source: AP)
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Smriti Mandhana Will Lead Indian Women At Some Point: Ramesh Powar

Smriti Mandhana was head and shoulders above all her Indian women batting colleagues during an otherwise disappointing series against Australian women which India lost 5-11 on a multiple-format point count.

Indian women’s team head coach Ramesh Powar is confident that the supremely stylish Smriti Mandhana, at some point in the near future, will captain the side as she is being looked upon as a potential leader.

Ramesh Powar. (TOI Photo)
Ramesh Powar. (TOI Photo)

Smriti Mandhana Will Lead At Some Point: Ramesh Powar

He, however, made it clear that he is setting no timeline for a change in leadership. The 25-year-old Smriti Mandhana had one of her best away series where she scored 86 in a WODI followed by a majestic 127, her first ton in Tests, and then a 52, albeit for a losing cause in the final women’s T20I.

“We are looking at her as a leader. At some point, she will lead,” Powar said after the end of the series.

Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI
Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI

One of the biggest reasons for zeroing in on Smriti Mandhana as a potential leader is a fact that she is an inspiration for the younger players in this team.

“She inspires a lot of younger players in the team. Obviously, we will rate her highly. The way she batted in Test was amazing, especially under lights. We knew she would come good,” Powar said, praising the T20 vice-captain.

What Ramesh Powar expected in all these years was consistency from Smriti Mandhana, and the Maharashtra batswoman is finally showing signs of good things that can be expected in the future.

“One season (of consistency), she will be a different player. She gets lots of game time playing in leagues across the world. And it becomes an advantage as in India you don’t get so much of game time.”

India has to “address some future roles for leadership”, perhaps after the conclusion of the Women 50-over World Cup in March-April. It’s possible Smriti Mandhana will become a top contender to take over the leadership.

As things stand, Mithali Raj captains in the longer Test formats while Harmanpreet Kaur remains T20I captain. Smriti Mandhana, deputy to Harmanpreet Kaur in T20Is, however, was the vice-captain throughout the multi-format series in Australia in Harmanpreet Kaur’s injury-enforced absence from the three-ODI leg and the standalone pink-ball Test.

Ramesh Powar: One Needs Characters To Win Women World Cup

Ramesh Powar is happy that in both England and Australia women series, the team management was able to give a lot of chances to younger players and also those in the fringes.

“You need characters to win World Cup. We stand at a juncture where Mithali and Jhulan will phase out at some point. We tested young bowlers like Meghana Singh and Renuka Thakur. We wanted to test our players,” said the former India off-spinner.

India Women
India Women. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

Ramesh Powar also made it clear that there is no room for complacency, as leg-spinner Poonam Yadav found out after consistent non-performance.

“If you are not performing your role, you will be sidelined. We don’t allow someone take their place for granted. The players who had to sit out were given proper chances,” the coach said.

All-rounder Deepti Sharma’s lack of firepower in the middle-overs has been a cause for worry, and Ramesh Powar informed that batting coach Shiv Sunder Das is working with the Bengal player.

“Change can’t happen in 10 days. Batting coach SS Das is working with her,” he added.

India lost both WODI and WT20I series 1-2 and 0-2, respectively, while one T20 game was washed out. Harmanpreet Kaur, along with seven others, will compete in the Women’s Big Bash League.

Harmanpreet Kaur looks on during the match BCCI
Harmanpreet Kaur looks on during the match BCCI
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Ramesh Powar Confirms Harmanpreet Kaur Won’t Be Available For 1st ODI vs Australian Women

Ramesh Powar, Team India head coach confirmed that batswoman Harmanpreet Kaur will not be available for the first ODI as she received a blow on her thumb. India plays Australian women in 3 ODI’s, 3 T20I’s, and a one-off Test.

India women’s ODI skipper Mithali Raj on Monday said the two-week quarantine period in Australia was tough on her side, but there is nothing to complain about and the Girls in Blue cannot wait to get out on the park.
Ramesh Powar. (TOI Photo)
Ramesh Powar. (TOI Photo)

Ramesh Powar: Harmanpreet Kaur Got A Hit On The Thumb So She Is Unavailable For The 1st ODI vs Australia

Team India head coach Ramesh Powar has also confirmed that Harmanpreet Kaur will not be available for the first ODI as she received a blow on her thumb some days back. India and Australia will be locking horns in a multi-format series, comprising three ODIs, one-off day-night Test, and three T20Is. The first ODI will be played on September 21.

“Harmanpreet Kaur was deemed fit and hence she was selected for this tour, but unfortunately some days back she got a hit on the thumb so she is not available for the first ODI. The next ODI, we will take a call according to her pain and fitness management. Shikha Pandey is fit and fine, she is available for selection,” said Ramesh Powar during a virtual press conference.

“We expect the senior players to guide youngsters which they are doing,” said Ramesh Ramesh Powar while Mithali Raj said: “The two-week quarantine period was tough on our players because it was for two weeks, we did a week in England but this was stretched another week.”

Mithali Raj - Twitter
Mithali Raj – Twitter

“We definitely are looking at the composition before the World Cup and we will be giving our players a little more game time to fit in those roles. That is our objective in this series. I have not set any benchmarks for myself in this series, I have always felt that however I am playing, at the end of the day, my performance has to help the team to do well. If we end up winning, that is what I have always played for,” she added.

Depending on how the batting unit performs, skipper Mithali Raj will decide on whether to bat number three or four in the longer run. With Harmanpreet Kaur injured for the opener, she is likely to stick to the No. 4 position to lend more solidity to the batting line-up.

When asked whether she will bat at number three in the ODI series against Australia, Mithali said: “I think I am quite flexible with my batting order, whether it’s number three or four. It all depends on the composition of the team, if we have a good middle-order, then I put my role up which is number three. If there is inexperience in the middle-order then I push myself at number four. It all depends on the composition and now with Harmanpreet out for the first ODI, I have to think about my order.”

Ramesh Powar said that all other members of the consolidated Test and ODI squad are fit and are obviously available for selection for Tuesday’s fixture against Australian women. Harmanpreet Kaur was left out of the warm-up game on Saturday in Brisbane, though she is understood to have batted in the nets.

She had ended her Hundred stints in the UK prematurely owing to a quadriceps injury and then joined India’s other four women cricketers -all of whom were Hundred-returnees in the Bengaluru preparatory camp to serve a mandatory seven-day quarantine.

Though cleared as fit to play, her inclusion in India’s 22-player women squad for the seven-match multi-format series was something of a gamble since she made the cut without having been subjected to a workload assessment at a training given the quarantine restrictions.

Ramesh Powar: Shafali Verma Needs To Be Given Time

Ramesh Powar also said that opening batswomen Shafali Verma needs to be given time as she is just a youngster and there should not be the weight of the expectations on her shoulders.

Shafali Verma became the thrid youngest Indian women cricketer to play Test cricket after she was handed her debut | Photo: BCCI women
Shafali Verma became the third-youngest Indian women cricketer to play Test cricket after she was handed her debut | Photo: BCCI women

“As far as Shafali is concerned, I think the way she played the Test game, we were happy. As a 17-year-old, we have to give her a little breathing space. Me, Mithali, and SS Das have had conversations with her.

“She knows what is expected out of her, we do not push her who is very expressive in her batting. We do not want to curtail her game, we want to give her freedom. She has played The Hundred so she has some confidence from that, it is important for us to let her express, she is just 17, we cannot forget that,” said Ramesh Powar.

Team India departed for Australia on August 28 and upon landing, every member of the touring party underwent mandatory 14-day hard quarantine.

The majority of the Australia squad face two weeks quarantine before facing India Getty Images
The majority of the Australia squad face two weeks quarantine before facing India Getty Images
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India Women’s Team Departs For Full-fledged Australia Tour Including 14-day Hard Quarantine

India women cricket team departed for a full-fledged tour of Australia on Sunday but fresh Covid-19 related restrictions Down Under means that the cricketers will now have to complete a 14-day hard quarantine upon arrival in Brisbane.

The Indian women’s team has left for Australia for a multi-format series comprising a pink-ball Test and three ODIs and T20Is each. The squad, led by Mithali Raj (Test and ODIs) and Harmanpreet Kaur (Twenty20 Internationals), is flying to Dubai from where they will take off to Brisbane around where they will play their games.

India Women
India Women. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

India Women Cricket Team Have To Complete A 14 Day Hard Quarantine Upon Arrival In Australia

The BCCI was earlier hoping that the India women players would get to train after a week of hard quarantine but now the players are likely to be confined to their hotel rooms for 14 days. The historic one-off pink-ball women’s Test between India Women and Australia Women, scheduled to begin from Sept 30, has been moved from the WACA in Perth to the Carrara Stadium (known commercially as the Metricon Stadium) in Gold Coast in Queensland.

According to reliable BCCI sources, the three-match ODI series between the two teams, which will kick off the tour from Sept 19, has now been moved from North Sydney Oval in Sydney to Mackay, a city in Queensland. The other two matches are supposed to be held on Sept 22 and 24.

“Training permission is highly unlikely after the first week in the current scenario. There could be further changes in the itinerary. The hard quarantine will be extremely tough for the players but is what it is,” said a BCCI official.

BCCI (File Photo| PTI)
BCCI (File Photo| PTI)

A player, trying to see things from a positive aspect, said, “It will be very tough but at least we get to play after that.”

The squad, which was training here for the past week, was to fly into Sydney and the other playing venues were Perth and Melbourne but venues have also been changed due to rising cases.  Gold Coast, and not North Sydney Oval as initially planned, will now also host the T20Is after staging India’s maiden, much-anticipated pink-ball Test on Oct 7, 9, and 11. An official announcement regarding the revised itinerary of the tour is expected soon.

India Women Is Set To Play Its 1st Ever Pink Ball Test In Australia

The change of itinerary will be announced by Cricket Australia soon and is subject to approval from the Queensland government since all games will be played in the state. The series comprising three ODIs, a day-night Test, and three T20s, is expected to begin two days later instead of September 19. The new venues are Mackay and Carrara.

The 22-member squad will reach Brisbane via Dubai on Monday. The team is set to play its first-ever pink ball game and that is seen as its biggest challenge of the tour. Even during training here, the preparations were focussed on white-ball cricket and it remains to be seen if the team gets a practice game before the series opener.

India Women players in action after an ODI against Australia. (File)
India Women players in action after an ODI against Australia. (File)

Meghna Singh, Yastika Bhatia, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, and Richa Ghosh have been included in the Test and ODI setups of the Indian Women’s team for the tour of Australia in September-October. Radha Yadav, Arundhati Reddy, Priya Punia, and Indrani Roy, who were part of the Indian Test and ODI squads in England but didn’t get a game, have been left out.

The visitors along with those Australian players based in Sydney and Melbourne will begin 14 days hard quarantine on Monday with no exemptions for training meaning two weeks of only being able to do what is possible inside a hotel room. It impacts 12 of Australia’s 18-player squad with only Beth Mooney (Queensland), Molly Strano and Nicola Carey (Tasmania), and Darcie Brown and Tahlia McGrath (South Australia) able to join the team closer to the start of the series.
Ian Chappell
Ian Chappell
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Ian Chappell Reckons T20 Format Is Enough To Take cricket Into Olympics And Not The 100

Ian Chappell, former Australia captain reckons that the T20 format is enough to take the sport into the Olympics and the newest addition ‘The Hundred’ was not really needed.

The Hundred is an England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) brainchild, and it is featuring eight teams taking on each other. The first match in the competition was played between the women’s teams of Oval Invincibles and Manchester Originals on July 21. The Hundred is a 100-ball cricket competition that is seeing (both men and women) featuring in the tournament.

At what point does cricket become less of a game and more of an entertainment? Getty Images
At what point does cricket become less of a game and more of an entertainment? Getty Images

Ian Chappell: T20 Enough For Participating In The Olympics And A Further Reduction-The 100 Wasn’t Necessary

Trent Rockets is leading the Men’s points table with 6 points by winning all 3 games while Northern Superchargers is leading Women’s points tally with 7 points in 4 games(3 wins and 1 no-result).

“Apart from reducing the number of balls to obtain a terrestrial television deal, the reasoning behind the Hundred could well be that it improves the chances of cricket fulfilling the Olympic dream. This is often cited as a way to spread the game’s popularity to a wider audience. Surely the T20 format could achieve that same outcome without yet another reduction,” Ian Chappell wrote in his column for ESPNcricinfo.

“Cricket is a team game ideally played by 11 members aside. Performance satisfaction is a big reason why youngsters fall in love with the game. Administrators would do well to remember that before they rush into devising shorter forms of the game. The more the length of an innings is reduced, the greater chance that there will be players “just making up the numbers”. Even those players crave occasional performance satisfaction,” Ian Chappell added.

Further talking about the new format, Ian Chappell said: “Throughout my playing career I believed there were two possible solutions to a problem: a simple one and a complicated one. I also believed that to the benefit of Australia, England would regularly choose the complicated solution. They’ve done it again.”

File image of Ian Chappell.(Hindustan Times)
File image of Ian Chappell. (Hindustan Times)

“To overcome the perceived problem of public not fully conversant with cricket, they’ve concocted another form of the game – The Hundred. That’s right, they’ve reduced by a mere 20 balls a format that was extremely popular with players and the public,” Ian Chappell added.

The England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) The Hundred tournament is currently going on with much fanfare. The unique format sees both the team face 100 balls each with new sets of rules for the players.

Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Rashid Khan Are Some Of The Prominent Names Participating In The 100

Players like Joe Root, Ben Stokes, Rashid Khan, Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis, Sunil Narine, Eoin Morgan, Moeen Ali, and Jonny Bairstow are taking part in the tournament. Women’s cricket matches are also taking place simultaneously in the Hundred with five Indian players featuring across women’s teams – Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Deepti Sharma, and Jemimah Rodrigues.

The Hundred
The Hundred

Probably in her worst batting phase before coming into the tournament, Jemimah Rodrigues dazzled on her Hundred debut with an unbeaten 92 off 43 balls studded with a whopping 17 fours and a six. She pulled Northern Superchargers out of deep trouble from 19 for 4 and took them to a stunning six-wicket win with 15 balls remaining.

Jemimah Rodrigues continued her form in the next game with another fifty – 60 off 41 with ten fours – against Trent Rockets that posted a match-winning 149 for her team.

Kevin Pietersen file image | Faheem Hussain - Sportzpics
Kevin Pietersen file image | Faheem Hussain - Sportzpics
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England Would Have Been More Successful If The Hundred Had Started Earlier, Says Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen believes if The Hundred had started earlier, England would have been a much better white-ball team. Kevin Pietersen highlighted how during his playing days there were only three or four English players playing the extravagant IPL. The former batsman also suggested that he was often left frustrated by the England team management’s decision to pick conservative batsmen.

England had a disastrous 2015 World Cup campaign as they lost to Pakistan, Sri Lanka, New Zealand, Australia, and Bangladesh. They failed to even clear the group stage hurdle. But since then, under the captaincy of Eoin Morgan, England’s white-ball team has been known to play an aggressive brand of cricket as was evident in their 2019 World Cup victory beating New Zealand in the final in a thriller.

Eoin Morgan of England celebrates with his team as he lifts the Cricket World Cup trophy after the Final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 between New Zealand and England at Lord's Cricket Ground on July 14, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Eoin Morgan of England celebrates with his team as he lifts the Cricket World Cup trophy after the Final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 between New Zealand and England at Lord’s Cricket Ground on July 14, 2019, in London, England. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

Kevin Pietersen: England Would Have Been More Successful If The Hundred Had Started Earlier

Kevin Pietersen suggested that if more English players had played in the IPL in the past, England would have adapted to the new ways much quicker.

Pietersen said in an interaction with the Daily Mail: “One hundred per cent (if England would have been more successful if The Hundred had come earlier). I played in an era when only four or five of us were playing IPL cricket and we were all frustrated sat in England teams, asking, “What on earth are we doing blocking the ball? Why are we picking players who block the ball?” Now you’ve got an England team full of IPL stars who get dropped if they block it. It’s a complete change in mindset.”

Kevin Pietersen
Kevin Pietersen. Image Credits: Twitter

The inaugural edition of The Hundred starts tomorrow, with the men’s edition set to begin on July 22nd.

Kevin Pietersen: BCCI And ECB Should Work Out A Way To Include Indian Male Cricketers In The Hundred

The former England batsman also hopes that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) can work out a way to include male Indian cricketers in The Hundred in the near future. Dinesh Karthik recently admitted that he would be open to playing in The Hundred.

However, with current rules set in place by the BCCI, the male Indian fringe cricketers who are still vying for spots in the national team or want to carry on playing domestic cricket have predominantly stayed away from foreign leagues to avoid risking their careers. Kevin Pietersen realizes the number of fans following The Hundred would increase if Indian male players joined the tournament.

Dinesh Karthik Photo: © Reuters (Main Image)
Dinesh Karthik Photo: © Reuters (Main Image)

“The male Indian players make the TV numbers shoot through the roof, and they also make the crowds. They’re so well supported. Politically, if the two boards are on that level and conversations are happening then that would be a huge coup for English cricket,” said Kevin Pietersen.

The BCCI has given NOC to five women cricketers to participate in the inaugural season of The Hundred. Shafali Verma, Harmanpreet Kaur, Jemimah Rodrigues, Smriti Mandhana, and Deepti Sharma are set to feature in the women’s edition of the competition.

The Hundred is a professional franchise 100-ball cricket tournament involving eight men’s and women’s teams located in major cities across England and Wales. The tournament will be run by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and will take place for the first time in summer 2021, having been delayed by a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Chris Woakes, Dom Sibley, Moeen Ali, and Adam Milne will be part of the Birmingham Phoenix, while Zak Crawley, Dan Lawrence, and Eoin Morgan will be part of the London Spirit. Jos Buttler, Phil Salt, Matt Parkinson, and Lockie Ferguson will be part of the Manchester Originals.

Ben Stokes, Adil Rashid, and David Willey will be part of the Northern Superchargers. Sam Curran, Rory Burns, Tom Curran, and Reece Topley will be part of the Oval Invincibles.

Jofra Archer, Liam Dawson, George Garton, Chris Jordan, and Tymal Mills will be part of the Southern Brave. Joe Root, Rashid Khan, and Alex Hales will be part of the Trent Rockets.  Ollie Pope, Jonny Bairstow, and Tom Banton will be part of the Welsh Fire.

Ellyse Perry - GETTY IMAGES
Ellyse Perry - GETTY IMAGES
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Ellyse Perry Withdraws From The Hundred Citing Personal Reasons

Ellyse Perry, Australian all-rounder has withdrawn from the inaugural season of The Hundred citing personal reasons. The 30-year old woman cricketer was slated to play for Birmingham Phoenix but the all-rounder has pulled out of the tournament.

Ellyse Perry was due to play for Birmingham Phoenix in the inaugural season of the Women's Hundred Getty Images
Ellyse Perry was due to play for Birmingham Phoenix in the inaugural season of the Women’s Hundred Getty Images

Ellyse Perry’s Australia Teammates Also Pulled Out

Ellyse Perry’s Australia teammates Rachael Haynes, Alyssa Healy, and Meg Lanning have also pulled out of the showpiece event, ahead of the start of the multi-format series against India, which begins in September.

“We are obviously very disappointed that Ellyse Perry has had to withdraw from the Hundred due to personal circumstances, but we completely understand her decision and wish her all the best,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Beth Barrett-Wild, head of the women’s competition, as saying.

Sophie Devine has been playing since the end of September when New Zealand toured Australia Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images
Sophie Devine has been playing since the end of September when New Zealand toured Australia Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images

Ellyse Perry’s absence further depletes a Phoenix squad that will already be without Sophie Devine. The New Zealander had pulled out of the tournament last month, The women’s Hundred will begin on July 21 and will run until August 21.

Meg Lanning, Beth Mooney, Georgia Wareham (all representing Welsh Fire), Sophie Molineux, Elyse Villani, Annabel Sutherland (all representing Trent Rockets), Ashleigh Gardner (Ellyse Perry’s teammate in Birmingham Phoenix), Alyssa Healy, and Nicola Carey (both Northern Superchargers) had already withdrawn while Rachael Haynes had confirmed her unavailability to turn out for the Oval Invincibles in May.

Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur, Jemimah Rodrigues, And Deepti Sharma Will Feature In The Hundred

Meanwhile, five Indian women cricketers — Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur, Jemimah Rodrigues, and Deepti Sharma — will be seen in action in the inaugural edition of ‘The Hundred’. Shafali Verma is the number one ranked short-form batter and she has joined Birmingham Phoenix as a replacement for Sophie Devine.

Harmanpreet Kaur will star in the opening match, at the Kia Oval on July 21, as she joins Manchester Originals. Jemimah Rodrigues will feature for Northern Superchargers. Smriti Mandhana is set to form a devastating opening partnership with Danni Wyatt at Southern Brave, while Deepti Sharma joins England captain Heather Knight at London Spirit.

Shafali Verma became the third youngest Indian women cricketer to play Test cricket after she was handed her debut | Photo: BCCI women
Shafali Verma became the third-youngest Indian women cricketer to play Test cricket after she was handed her debut | Photo: BCCI women

The Hundred, to be organized and invented by ECB, will feature eight teams taking on each other. The first match in the competition will be played between the women’s teams of Oval Invincibles and Manchester Originals on July 21.
The Hundred is a 100-ball cricket competition that will see prominent players (both men and women) featuring in the tournament in the English summer.

Sneh Rana took three wickets on the first day of her Test debut Getty Images
Sneh Rana took three wickets on the first day of her Test debut Getty Images
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Mithali Raj Praised Sneh Rana After India Women’s Clinch 3rd ODI Against England

Mithali Raj, the Indian skipper heaped praise on all-rounder Sneh Rana and said that she can be groomed into a finisher after Indian women defeated England women in the third and final ODI.

India defeated England by four wickets in the third ODI on Saturday at the New Road, Worcester. Mithali Raj played a captain’s knock as she remained unbeaten on 75 off just 86 balls. In the end, Sneh Rana also played a crucial 24-run knock which came off just 22 balls with the help of three fours.

Mithali Raj runs between the wicket. (Getty Images)
Mithali Raj runs between the wicket. (Getty Images)

Mithali Raj: Sneh Rana Will Have A Bigger Role Playing For India In The Forthcoming Years

Sneh Rana’s cameo of 24 from 22 balls at No. 7 in Worcester was pivotal to her 50-run sixth-wicket stand with Mithali Raj as the duo helped India seal a four-wicket win in the final match of the three-game ODI leg of the multi-format series.

Earlier in the day, Sneh Rana had also made an impact with the ball, returning figures of 7-0-31-1, having opener Lauren Winfield-Hill caught for 36 to break a 67-run second-wicket partnership. She had picked up 1 for 43 in the second ODI.

“Definitely, yes. That’s a slot we have always looked for somebody who has the shots to clear the field, strong shots all around. And it helps to have a player there who can also bowl. So it’s good to have her on the side.

“She’s definitely shown that she does have the character in her to be built into a good player. In the current era, in modern cricket, allrounders play a very important role in the composition of the team. I’m sure that she has bigger role-playing for India in the coming years,” said Mithali while replying to an ANI query during a virtual post-match press conference.

Sneh Rana celebrates a wicket Getty Images
Sneh Rana celebrates a wicket Getty Images

India went on to lose the three-match ODI series against England but the solitary win in the third ODI will give the visitors a much-needed boost ahead of the upcoming T20I leg of the tour.

Indian women debutants Shafali Verma (96 and 63), Deepti Sharma (3/65, 29* and 54), Taniya Bhatia (0 and 44*), Sneh Rana (4/131, 2 and 80*), and Pooja Vastrakar (1/53, 12 and 12) took the centre-stage to manage a draw against England women in the one-off Test preceding the ODIs after being followed-on in India’s first Test after seven years.

Mithali Raj: It’s Just A Matter Of One Innings For A Batswoman Like Harmanpreet Kaur To Get Her Rhythm Back

Mithali Raj was of the opinion that Harmanpreet Kaur who has not been able to show any form with the bat recording scores of 16,19 and 1 in the three ODIs will get her rhythm back in the T20 format. She was not able to get among the runs in the one-off Test as well.

Harmanpreet Kaur, whose epic 171 against Australia in the 2017 World Cup, became a seminal moment for the women’s game in the country, has since gone off the boil. In 29 ODI matches (in which she didn’t get to bat six times) since the 2017 World Cup final against England, the Indian vice-captain has scored only two fifties and two scores over 40, which has put the maximum pressure on the scoreboard.

“It does happen with any player. Sometimes you are just not in form. But as a team and as a unit we back players who have been match-winners. We also know that single-handedly she has won games for us with her innings.

“This time around she needs the support of the team to back her. It’s just a matter of one innings for a batter-like her to get her rhythm and timing. I’m sure with the T20 format, a format that suits her game, I really hope she will be back among the runs,” said Mithali.

Harmanpreet Kaur has crossed fifty only twice in last 28 matches. AP
Harmanpreet Kaur has crossed fifty only twice in the last 29 matches. AP

Talking about the form of No.3 Jemimah Rodrigues, Mithali said: “A young player, obviously, she (Rodrigues) will take some time. It’s just a matter of experience and exposure for players like her.

“When a player goes through bad form, as players, seniors, and team management we can give her the confidence and the backing, but it boils down to the player herself to have that belief to come out of the bad form. Again, for a batter, it’s just a matter of one innings to get the timing right and hope that as a young player she should get back in form.”

In the third and final ODI, Mithali Raj was also able to become the highest run-scorer in women’s international cricket, across all three formats. She surpassed England’s Charlotte Edwards to become the leading run-scorer.

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