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Shafali verma

Shafali Verma, Radha Yadav will be a part of the premier women's domestic T20 tournament, WBBL, with Sydney Sixers | Courtesy- Cricket.com.au
Shafali Verma, Radha Yadav will be a part of the premier women's domestic T20 tournament, WBBL, with Sydney Sixers | Courtesy- Cricket.com.au
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Shafali Verma And Radha Yadav Signed By WBBL Club Sydney Sixers For WBBL 07

Shafali Verma, a young batting sensation and left-arm spinner Radha Yadav have been snapped up by Sydney Sixers ahead of the upcoming WBBL, the club announced on Monday (September 27). The announcement comes a day after Sydney Thunder confirmed the signings of Smriti Mandhana and Deepti Sharma.

Shafali Verma, India’s youngest debutant in international cricket, put up stunning performances on Australian shores last year at the T20 World Cup and sits on top of the ICC rankings in the format.

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

Shafali Verma Bags Her Maiden WBBL Deal

At the back of her T20 exploits, the teenager also played for Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred recently. On Sunday (September 26), she starred in India’s famous win over Australia with a mature half-century. With her stocks constantly on the rise, Shafali Verma has now bagged her maiden WBBL deal. On Sunday, she scored a maiden ODI half-century with a mature knock of 56 as India upset the mighty Australian team, snapping a 26-game win streak.

“This is a very good opportunity for me and my goal is to just enjoy myself, to make some new friends and have fun,” Verma said. “I want to play WBBL and back myself and just believe in myself.”

Shafali Verma played for the Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred recently
Shafali Verma played for the Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred recently © Getty

Head Coach Ben Sawyer, who worked with Shafali Verma in England in the recently-concluded inaugural season of the Hundred, lavished praises on the youngster labeling her fearless.

“She hits to different areas of the field and plays shots that are different to the other three girls in that top four,” he said. “The experience I had with her in Birmingham was that she wants to learn, she wants to get better and she wants to grow as a player and a person.”

At just 17, Shafali Verma, who in 2019 became India’s youngest ever to play women’s T20 internationals, is widely considered the best batting talent in the world and currently sits atop the ICC Women’s T20I Player Rankings. Shafali Verma is expected to form a lethal combination with Alyssa Healy, Ellyse Perry, and Ash Gardner at the top of the order for the Sixers, giving the team the most exciting top four in WBBL history.

Radha Yadav Will Be Making Her Maiden WBBL Appearance

Radha Yadav, who is in India’s squad for the upcoming T20Is against Australia, will also be making her maiden appearance in the WBBL.

“Lots of young Indian girls want to play in the WBBL,” Yadav said. “It is a very good standard and I am so happy to be able to play for the Sixers this year.”

Radha Yadav (Getty Images)
Radha Yadav (Getty Images)

Ben Sawyer was delighted with the 21-year-old spinner’s acquisition as well considering the variety she lends to the bowling attack.

“Radha brings a skill set that we have never had at the Sixers and that’s very exciting,” he said. “I think a left-arm ortho bowler is so important in the WBBL and having one who is world-class is such a great opportunity for this team. She has also batted in the middle of the order for India so she is handy with the bat too.”

Not to be overshadowed by her teenage teammate, left-arm orthodox spinner Radha Yadav who is placed 11th on the ICC Women’s T20I Player Rankings arrives at the Sydney Sixers with an outstanding resume of her own. Now aged 21, Radha Yadav was one of the discoveries of the 2018 ICC Women’s World Twenty20, finishing as the joint-leading wicket-taker for India in the tournament, with eight dismissals in five matches.

The Sydney Sixers begin their WBBL 07 campaign in the season opener against the Melbourne Stars on Thursday, October 14 at Blundstone Arena in Hobart.

Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI
Smriti Mandhana. Image-PTI
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Smriti Mandhana And Deepti Sharma Signed By Sydney Thunder In WBBL 2021/22

Smriti Mandhana and allrounder Deepti Sharma were signed by WBBL franchise Sydney Thunder, the defending WBBL champions who have pulled off a coup signing the duo ahead of their title defence in October.

Experienced Smriti Mandhana, coming off her highest ODI score of the year, is set to play for her third WBBL club after previous stints with Brisbane Heat and Hobart Hurricanes. Deepti Sharma has never played in the WBBL but has experience in domestic T20 leagues.

Smriti Mandhana is set for her third WBBL club Albert Perez/Getty Images
Smriti Mandhana is set for her third WBBL club Albert Perez/Getty Images

Sydney Thunder Signs Smriti Mandhana And Deepti Sharma

Deepti Sharma featured in the women’s competition of the inaugural Hundred, for London Spirit in 2020, claiming 10 wickets at an economy rate of 5.26 and, along with Smriti Mandhana, was part of Western Storm’s title-winning 2019 campaign at the now-defunct Kia Super League.

England's Captain Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont ©Action Images/Paul Childs
England’s Captain Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont ©Action Images/Paul Childs

The pair come in as replacements for English duo Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont who were unavailable despite England’s tour of Pakistan being cancelled. Shafali Verma and Radha Yadav are also set to play in the WBBL with Shafali Verma’s father, Sanjeev Verma, confirming that she has signed with Sydney Sixers back in May.

Smriti Mandhana Excited To Learn From Another Opportunity To Play In The WBBL

Smriti Mandhana, 25, said she was excited to get another opportunity to play in the WBBL and relished the challenge of being the marquee overseas player.

“Playing in overseas leagues gives you a lot of experience, especially in the T20 format,” Mandhana said. “Then, of course, you exchange so much experience with each other . . . with all the players from over the world . . . so you get to learn a lot. Rather than ‘pressure’, I always look at it as an opportunity to learn, and to get used to that pressure because it only builds when you play international cricket.”

Deepti Sharma ANI
Deepti Sharma ANI

Deepti Sharma, 24, was thrilled to get her first chance to play in the WBBL.

“This is my first time [in the WBBL], so I’m excited,” Sharma said. “I’ve had offers before, but I couldn’t play at the time because at the time we had [an international] series. It’s a big thing for Indian women’s cricket that we have the opportunity to play in the WBBL. We have to express ourselves in the competition.”

Coach Trevor Griffin, who earlier worked with the pair at Storm, felt the Indian duo were the perfect replacements for the England pair of Heather Knight and Tammy Beaumont.

“While it’s disappointing not to be able to have Heather back, if you could choose any replacement for her it would be Deepti – she’s also a star,” Griffin said. “She offers a lot with the bat – Deepti is a match-winner – and she also has the talent to bowl in the powerplay, during the middle of a match, or at the death.

“Smriti is an opening batter who has the tremendous ability to take everything in her stride. I like that she keeps her game really simple; she just wants to score runs. I’m delighted to have her on board, and I have no doubt that she’ll prove to be a great addition to Thunder.”

The WBBL begins on October 14, following India’s ongoing multi-format series against Australia, with the first 20 matches to be played in Tasmania. The finals of the WBBL 2021 will be set to play on 27th November of 2021. The WBBL 2021 features 59 matches in total which includes 56 group league matches, an Eliminator, a Challenger, and a final match.

File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters
File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters
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Jhulan Goswami Picks Her 600th Career Wicket In India Women’s Win

Jhulan Goswami, India women’s veteran pacer achieved a personal milestone of 600 career wickets when she dismissed Australia’s captain Meg Lanning who was caught behind for a duck in the 3rd WODI between India and Australia women at McKay on Sunday.

Jhulan Goswami, 38, is the leading wicket-taker in the format and remains the only bowler in the women’s game to claim over 200 ODI wickets. Playing her 192nd game, Jhulan Goswami returned figures of 3-37 in her 10 overs, a couple of days after she had bowled a last-ball no-ball to hand Australia a controversial win in the 2nd ODI.

Jhulan Goswami File Photo
Jhulan Goswami File Photo

Jhulan Goswami Picks Her 600th Career Wicket In India Women’s Win

Jhulan Goswami now has acquired 240 ODI wickets at 21.59, while she has claimed 41 wickets in 11 Tests at 17.63 and has 56 T20I wickets in 68 matches, a tally of 337 international wickets. She has 264 wickets in the domestic circuit. She had retired from T20Is in 2018.

Jhulan Goswami claimed the prized scalp of Meg Lanning after sending back Rachael Haynes to hand India an early advantage in the 3rd ODI, but a late-order resistance from Beth Mooney, Ash Gardner, and Tahlia McGrath ensured that Australia posted a challenging 265/9.

Meg Lanning (Photo: Meg Lanning/Instagram)
Meg Lanning (Photo: Meg Lanning/Instagram)

Leading the series 2-0 and with a 26-match winning streak in the format, Australia’s Meg Lanning opted to bat first after a steady start by openers Alyssa Healy and a returning Rachael Haynes, who put on 41, but Australia lost both Rachael Haynes and Meg Lanning in the same over to Jhulan Goswami. Alyssa Healy was run out at the non-strikers’ end before Ellyse Perry was dismissed by Pooja Vastrakar for 26 off 47 balls.

Jhulan Goswami Picked 3 Scalps, Shafali Verma And Yastika Bhatia Scored The 50s

But Beth Mooney (52) and Ashleigh Gardner (67) put on 98 runs for the fifth wicket to help Australia recover before Tahlia McGrath powered her way to a 32-ball 47. India fought back well in the death overs to dent Australia’s charge and held them to 264/9, with Pooja Vastrakar and Jhulan Goswami claiming three wickets each while went to off-spinner Sneh Rana.

Indian Women's Cricket Team
Indian Women’s Cricket Team. Image Credits: Twitter

India women went on to win by 2 wickets with 3 balls remaining and end Australia women’s winning streak. Shafali Verma and Yastika Bhatia scored fifties. Jhulan Goswami, who set the game up with 3 for 37, sealed victory with the bat in the final over and was awarded Player Of the Match. Australia asked for more than something special from the opposition to lose an ODI at long last, India delivered it to end Australia’s 26 WODI match-winning streak.

To avert a third straight loss and a second morale-crushingly narrow defeat in under 36 hours, India women needed 24 – and character from their lower order – of the last four overs in their stiff chase of 275. Their previous highest successful ODI chase was 248, and their task was made more difficult by their efforts on the field, where they shelled four genuine chances as well as gave away misfields that cost them at least 15 runs.

Australian women had won their last two WODIs against Indian women by 9 wickets chasing 226 with 54 balls remaining and by 5 wickets in the last ball chasing 275. The action now moves to the day-night pink-ball Test starting from 30th September followed by 3 T20Is in early October.

India Women 266 for 8 (Batia 64, Verma 55, Sutherland 3-30) beat Australia Women 264 for 9 (Gardner 67, Mooney 52, Goswami 3-37, Vastrakar 3-46) by two wickets

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.

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.

Jhulan Goswami File Photo
Jhulan Goswami File Photo
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India Women Players Are Trying Out Various Options To Be Better Prepared For World Cup, Says Jhulan Goswami

Jhulan Goswami said the Indian women’s cricket team would be trying out various options during the upcoming England series and beyond to check out what is the best possible combination that can be fielded going into next year’s WODI World Cup in New Zealand.

India’s senior middle-order batters like skipper Mithali Raj, Punam Raut, and Deepti Sharma were all guilty of wasting as many as 180 odd deliveries in the first ODI which England won by eight wickets chasing a modest target of 202. Mithali Raj top-scored with a 108-ball 72 but aside from Shafali Verma, who made a 14-ball 15, no India batter could score at a 90-plus strike rate.

Mithali Raj scored her 56th ODI fifty but struggled for rhythm Getty Images
Mithali Raj scored her 56th ODI fifty but struggled for rhythm Getty Images.

Jhulan Goswami: India Women Players Are Trying To Settle Combination And Create Options With An Eye To Upcoming WODI World Cup

Jhulan Goswami didn’t give a definitive answer on vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur’s batting position but indicated that a lot of options will be tried out before the World Cup in New Zealand next year.

“Well, we are trying to settle our combination. We are trying to create a few options. Now which options will click for us, we are (still) searching for that. Whatever things will happen (options we finalise), the management will take a call before the World Cup,” Goswami said on the eve of the second WODI against England.

“Before the World Cup, we are trying to settle down a few things. Hopefully, in the coming matches, the coming series, we will sort out all those things.”

File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters
File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters

According to Jhulan Goswami, young Shafali Verma shouldn’t be put under the immense pressure of expectation and the veteran pacer is confident that it’s just a matter of time before the middle-order batsmen will produce impact performances expected of them in the ongoing series against England.

“Well…It is just the first match for Shafali. Day before yesterday, she made her debut in ODI cricket. We are expecting so much from her because that is the impact she has had,” Goswami, world’s highest wicket-taker in women’s ODIs, wants everyone to cut some slack when it comes to analysing the performance of a teenager.

” We just need one good knock from one among the top 3. They will definitely score runs. Just these things happen in cricket,” Goswami said about the consumption of 180 dot balls.

“Every day is a new day, every day is a new learning experience. One good innings from the three. Harman(Kaur) needs one good knock, we know Harman can do it. One good knock is required from our middle-order,” the 38-year-old seamer said.

Harmanpreet Kaur managed only 1 off 7 deliveries. She failed in the preceding Test as well scoring 4 and 8.

Jhulan Goswami: Bowlers Need To Believe In Their Abilities And Comeback Strongly In Next Games

Jhulan Goswami also believes that as a bowling group, they need to believe in their abilities and come back strongly after England batswomen Tammy Beaumont and Natalie Sciver gave them a real pasting in the opening ODI with both batsmen scoring at a strike rate of 100. Jhulan Goswami and Ekta Bisht took a wicket apiece but the target wasn’t a substantial total that can be defended easily.

“Honestly speaking, we need to come back as a bowling group strongly. We have discussed a lot of things, hopefully we can sort it out and come back strongly. You have to believe in these bowlers, they are your best bowlers, they have the ability.”

Tammy Beaumont and Nat Sciver stitched an unbroken 119-run partnership PA Photos/Getty Images
Tammy Beaumont and Natalie Sciver stitched an unbroken 119-run partnership PA Photos/Getty Images

“Both of our medium-pacers Shikha Pandey, Pooja Vastrakar, and we have another two pacers in the side, all are very good cricketers. Shikha is coming back from a break. Puja is playing after a long time. They are quality bowlers. They need a little bit of time, they will do well. They have won matches single-handedly for India. We just need to give them some time, they will come back strongly. I have a lot of confidence in them,” Jhulan signed off.

While Tammy Beaumont smashed 87 runs in 87 balls, Natalie Sciver hammered 74 runs in 74 runs as England women won the match in 34.5 overs. With the win, England took a 1-0 lead in the three-match ODI series. The 2nd match of the series will be played on Wednesday.

England 202 for 2 (Beamont 87*, Sciver 74*) beat India 201 for 8 (Raj 72, Raut 32, Ecclestone 3-40, Shrubsole 2-33, Brunt 2-35) by eight wickets

File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters
File image of Jhulan Goswami | Andrew Couldridge/Reuters
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India Need To Groom Pacers Other Than Veteran Jhulan Goswami, Says Mithali Raj

Mithali Raj, the Indian Women Cricket team’s skipper on Sunday said the time has come for the Indian women’s team to think beyond long-serving and over-worked veteran pacer Jhulan Goswami by grooming young pace bowlers for the future.

Mithali Raj blamed both the batting as well as the bowling units for India’s below-par show in the first ODI against England on Sunday, which the visitors lost by eight wickets to go down 0-1 in the three-match series.

Mithali Raj scored her 56th ODI fifty but struggled for rhythm Getty Images
Mithali Raj scored her 56th ODI fifty but struggled for rhythm Getty Images.

Mithali Raj: India Needs Top 5 Batswomen To Get Runs In Next Few Games Against Experienced England Bowlers

Sent in to bat, India played 181 dot balls to post a modest 201 for eight, which England chased down with 91 balls to spare. Mithali Raj top-scored with a 108-ball 72 but aside from Shafali Verma, who made a 14-ball 15, no India batter could score at a 90-plus strike rate.

England’s four-pronged seam attack did its part to keep a hold on the opposition’s scoring rate. The next-best score from the India batters came from No. 3 Punam Raut, whose 61-ball 32 did little to inject urgency in the innings.

“Yes, we need to look into that aspect and keep on rotating strike,” Raj said about the dot balls during the post-match virtual press conference.

“We need our top-5 batters to get runs. We also need to understand that England seamers are very experienced. They know how to bowl in their conditions.”

Punam Raut (Photo: PTI)
Punam Raut (Photo: PTI)

She said her side’s seam bowlers were not up to the mark.

“It puts pressure (on the opposition) if we can get early wickets. If we don’t get wickets from the seamers it puts pressure on the spinners. So we need to groom fast bowlers other than Jhulan. They should learn on how to understand conditions and bowl well accordingly,” she added.

Mithali Raj made a patient 72 off 108 balls to help India go past the 200-run mark after the early dismissals of openers Shafali Verma (15) and Smriti Mandhana (10).

Mithali Raj Opens Up On Decision To Bat Down The Order At No. 4 From Preferred No. 3 Position

But her knock was not enough as Indian batters failed to rotate the strike and find boundaries to accelerate the scoring rate.

“Our batting lineup needs to fire at some point. Over the years we are far more comfortable chasing than posting targets. We need to work on that, we need to know how to get 250,” she said.

“But we just can’t go bang bang and lose wickets. We need to know when to push the acceleration and how to get that.”

Mithali Raj said the team management also needs to back the players’ side by side, as she hinted that there might be a few changes in the composition of the playing eleven in the second ODI.

“It is important to back players especially who has done well in the past. Sometimes it is a gamble to play stroke players. But we need to back players to groom them keeping the World Cup in mind. Apart from the captain, coach, and support staff, the selectors also play a big part in that and we are in constant touch with them,” she said.

“We will definitely look into the composition, a little bit shuffle in the batting order to get over the line.”

Mithali Raj Twitter
Mithali Raj Twitter

The skipper said that since she is standing at the twilight of her career, it is her duty to groom her replacement batswoman and future stars of the team.

“…when it comes to finishers we clearly don’t have players for that slot who scored runs at the domestic level. We need to groom someone who shows potential in that area. I have got most of my runs in No. 3 slot but it is important to get batters in that slot. We need to have batters who can score runs. I am not going to play for long so it is my duty to groom players,” Mithali said about her decision to drop down the order at No. 4 from her preferred No. 3 slot.

While Tammy Beaumont smashed 87 runs in 87 balls, Natalie Sciver hammered 74 runs in 74 runs as England women won the match in 34.5 overs. With the win, England took a 1-0 lead in the three-match ODI series. The 2nd match of the series will be played on Wednesday.

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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England Women Resorted To Constant Sledging To Disturb Indian Women Team’s Concentration: Sneh Rana

England women players resorted to “constant sledging” to disturb the concentration of the Indian women team but they maintained their composure to pull off a thrilling draw for the Indian women’s team in the one-off Test here.

It was a tale of Indian women debutants as 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 eke out a draw against England women after being followed-on in India’s first Test after seven years.

England Women Sledged A Lot, Says India's Savior Sneh Rana who first took four wickets, then played a match-saving knock of 80 not out in India's second innings. Courtesy: Twitter
England Women Sledged A Lot, Says India’s Savior Sneh Rana who first took four wickets, then played a match-saving knock of 80 not out in India’s second innings. Courtesy: Twitter

England Women Players Tried To Disturb Indian Women Players Who Were Unnerved

Needing two wickets in the final session, England women bowlers were on top and used all the tactics with close-in fielders and constant sledging but Sneh Rana and Taniya Bhatia remained unfazed.

“It was their job to disturb us, and they kept on doing so many things to achieve their goal,” Rana, who scripted a heroic act with Bhatia in their century-plus unbroken nine-wicket partnership, said at a virtual post-match conference on Saturday night.

India's Taniya Bhatia plays a shot during the one-off Test against England. — Reuters
India’s Taniya Bhatia plays a shot during the one-off Test against England. — Reuters

“We did not pay any attention and kept on talking to each other after every ball, be it from far or getting closer. It boosted us up. We just wanted to do it for our team. That was the only conversation we had in the middle.”

England women’s Sophie Ecclestone’s four wickets earlier in the day had England in a prime position to push for victory before an eighth-wicket partnership worth 41 runs between Sneh Rana and Shikha Pandey had India clinging on to the prospect of a draw at tea.

Sneh Rana, who on Test debut produced just the innings her side needed, reaching 80 not out off 154 balls to kill off any chance of the hosts sealing a result while Taniya Bhatia was unbeaten on 44 at stumps.

Sneh Rana And Deepti Sharma Opens Up On The One-Off Test

In her first match for India after five years, the spin allrounder Sneh Rana bowled 39.2 overs in the first innings before putting up the rescue-act batting at No 8.

“There was no nervousness. We just wanted to play our basics. There was sledging in the middle but we both decided to just focus on our batting and put in extra focus.I don’t think much and just keep myself busy. I didn’t want the situation to take over me so that I could play my natural game.”

Asked about missing a century on her Test debut, Rana said: “I didn’t think about the century. The team wanted me to stay so I was just playing ball-by-ball and contribute to the team.”

Sneh Rana remained unbeaten on 80 against England in the second innings
Sneh Rana remained unbeaten on 80 against England in the second innings (Courtesy: Reuters)

Promoted to No 3 after being unbeaten in the first innings, Deepti Sharma was steely in her partnership with Shafali Verma as she put in the foundation before England triggered a collapse. Indian women lost the momentum midway into the 2nd innings as they were staring on the brink of a defeat with the score at 199/7 before managing a respectable 344/8 following on.

“Actually, it was about starting all over again and play session by session. I always enjoy batting with Shafali, we know there will be sixes, boundaries anytime when she is playing.”

“I got a lot of confidence from my knock in the first innings, I just wanted to play close to my body in the second innings. I just played session-by-session,” Sharma said.

The England women and Indian women teams agreed to a draw at 6.13 pm local time with India 344 for 8 in their second innings following on, a lead of 179 runs, after Sneh Rana and Taniya Bhatia had combined for an unbroken stand of 104 for the 9th wicket.

India 231 (Verma 96, Mandhana 78, Ecclestone 4-88, Knight 2-7) and 344 for 8 (Rana 80*, Verma 63, Sharma 54, Bhatia 44*) (f/o) drew with England 396 for 9 declared (Knight 95, Dunkley 74*, Beaumont 66, Rana 4-131, Sharma 3-65)

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