India, WI brace up for Twenty20s

India's women will face West Indies in the first of three Twenty20s at the Mulapadu Cricket playfield near Vijayawada on Friday.

Harmanpreet Kaur will replace Mithali Raj as India's captain for the Twenty20s.   -  G. P. Sampath Kumar

After having accomplished its first mission by winning the One-Day International (ODI) series against West Indies, India will embark upon a difficult assignment when it takes on the vanquished in the shortest format - T20 - at the Mulapadu Cricket playfield near here on Friday. West Indies is the world champion in the format.

Six changes were made to the ODI team that lifted the series on Wednesday and making their debut will be Andhra’s Sabbineni Meghana, Manasi Joshi and wicketkeeper Nuzhat Parveen.

“These young girls are full of fire and they are raring to go. V. R. Vanitha, Anuja Patil and Preeti Bose will be the other new players in the squad. They know the format well as they [have played in] Australia, Sri Lanka and in the World Cup,” said Indian coach Purnima Rau.

Rau said the the team possessed some brilliant stroke-makers.

“In this format, aggression is the best form of defence and we know we are pitched against the world champions. Players like Harmanpreet Kaur, Veda Krishnamurthy, Mithali Raj, Smriti Mandhana can change the course of the game if they get going.”

The three-day series will see Harmanpreet replacing Mithali as the skipper of the team. The next two matches will be held on November 20 and 22.

India’s squad: Harmanpreet Kaur (Capt), Smriti Mandhana, Mithali Raj, Veda Krishnamurthy, S. Meghana, Vanitha VR, Anuja Patil, Deepti Sharma, Nuzhat Parween (wk), Ekta Bisht, Poonam Yadav, Preeti Bose, Jhulan Goswami, Shikha Pandey, Manasi Joshi.