Hello and welcome to Sportstar's LIVE updates of the Women's World T20 2018 as India takes on New Zealand in the opener at Providence Stadium, Guyana.
- 20:58 pm: WICKET - Dayalan Hemalatha perishes as India eves loses its third wicket. She got tempted by the flight but failed to put away the full toss and hits it straight into the hands of short fine leg.
- 08: 50 pm: Debutant Dayalan Hemalatha is not holding back as she collects two quick boundaries. India Women 37/2 in 5.0 overs.
- 08:48 pm: WICKET - Another blow for India eves as Smriti Mandhana departs. It was short, Mandhana went for the pull but failed to keep it down as Hayley Jensen plucks a blinder at deep square leg. India Women 22/2 in 3.5 overs.
- 08:46 pm: FOUR - Jemimah Rodrigues breaks away from the shackles with a crisp drive through the covers and the ball races away to the fence. Much needed boundary for the India eves.
- 08:45 pm: After 3 overs India Women 17/1.
- 08:37 pm: Jemimah Rodrigues is the new batswoman and India eves need to build a partnership. India Women 14/1 in 2.0 overs.
- 08:36 pm: WICKET - New Zealand strike early as Lea Tahuhu castles Taniya Bhatia. This is a huge wicket and India eves are on the backfoot early. It was an inswinger, Bhatia was late to get her bat down, the ball hits her front pad and then on to the stumps. India Women 9/1 in 1.1 overs.
- 08:35 pm: Taniya Bhatia collects a couple of boundaries but Smriti Mandhana is yet to open her account. India Women 9/0 in 1.0 overs.
- 08:32 pm: Taniya Bhatia is off the mark with a cheeky boundary and there is some signs of turn in the pitch straightaway. India Women 4/0 in 0.2 overs.
- 08:31 pm: Jess Watkin will open the innings with the ball for New Zealand and it will be Taniya Bhatia on strike.
- 08:30 pm: The anthems are done and dusted and out walk the Indian openers, Taniya Bhatia and Smriti Mandhana.
- 08:24 pm: Former India skipper Rahul Dravid has a special message for the Indian Women's team.
- 08:15 pm: India Women Playing XI: Smriti Mandhana, Taniya Bhatia(WK), Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur(C), Dayalan Hemalatha, Mithali Raj, Deepti Sharma, Veda Krishnamurthy, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Arundhati Reddy.
- 08:15 pm: New Zealand Women Playing XI: Suzie Bates, Anna Peterson, Sophie Devine, Amy Satterthwaite(C), Katey Martin(WK), Maddy Green, Leigh Kasperek, Jess Watkin, Hayley Jensen, Amelia Kerr, Lea Tahuhu.
- 08:11 pm: It will be a special day for Dayalan Hemalatha who will be making her debut. The 24-year old Tamil Nadu girl is a top-order batswoman and a right-arm offbreak bowler.
- 08:03 pm: Toss Updates: India Women won the toss and have opted to bat.
- 07:58 pm: The Indian team is going through the paces in what promises to be a cracker of a contest.
- 07:52 pm: Dayalan Hemalatha will make her T20 debut for India.
India Women: Mithali Raj, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur(c), Veda Krishnamurthy, Dayalan Hemalatha, Deepti Sharma, Radha Yadav, Taniya Bhatia(w), Poonam Yadav, Anuja Patil, Ekta Bisht, Mansi Joshi, Pooja Vastrakar, Arundhati Reddy.
New Zealand: Suzie Bates, Anna Peterson, Sophie Devine, Amy Satterthwaite(c), Katey Martin(w), Bernadine Bezuidenhout, Jess Watkin, Hayley Jensen, Amelia Kerr, KE Ebrahim, Holly Huddleston, Leigh Kasperek, Hannah Rowe, Lea Tahuhu, Maddy Green.
A young Indian squad will aim to emerge from the shadows of a winless past when it launches its bid for a maiden title with a tough opener against New Zealand in the first standalone Women’s World T20 starting on Friday.
India has not been very competitive in the shortest format compared to the 50-over game in which it scripted a path-breaking moment last year, when it reached the World Cup final.
In the end, nerves got the better of it and it lost the title clash to England after being in complete control at one stage.
Captain Harmanpreet Kaur and recently-appointed coach Ramesh Powar insist that the team has learnt from that final loss and the presence of youngsters, including six World Cup debutants, makes the squad “fearless“.
India has never won the World T20 in five previous attempts with its best result, a semifinal appearance, coming in 2009 and 2010. This is the first standalone World T20 for women after being held alongside the men’s event in the past editions.
In the lead-up to the World T20, India has hit good form, beating host Sri Lanka before blanking Australia A at home. What should give it additional confidence going into the opener is the wins against reigning champion West Indies and England in the warm-up matches.
Opener Smriti Mandhana, on whom India will be relying heavily in the Caribbean, said the Asia Cup T20 final loss to Bangladesh in June was a timely wake-up call. While Mandhana’s performance will be crucial at the top, teenager Jemimah Rodriguez, Tanya Bhatia and Harmanpreet will make up the middle order.
The spin department, led by leggie Poonam Yadav, is India’s strength while the pace department lacks experience after the retirement of veteran Jhulan Goswami.
India has failed to go past the group stage in the previous three editions and will have to play well consistently to advance to the knockouts.
After the opener against New Zealand, India will face Pakistan on November 11, Ireland on November 15 and three-time champion Australia on November 17.