After an underwhelming performance in the series opener against England, the Indian women’s cricket team will be eyeing a much improved batting effort in the second T20I here on Tuesday.
The first game at Chester-le-Street saw the Indian batters coming a cropper against the English bowlers.
“We discussed a few things after the first game. We obviously didn’t play the brand of cricket we played over the last few months. We really need to match the standards of what we have achieved in the past. It was a bit disappointing but it was just another bad day,” said opener Smriti Mandhana in pre-match press conference.
‘Need to improve our batting in the middle-overs’
Mandhana reiterated what skipper Harmanpreet Kaur had to say after the loss in the first game about the unfit conditions at Chester-le-Street but admitted that the team really needs to improve its batting, especially in the middle-overs.
“Yes, the conditions were not that good in the first game and there were patches on the outfield too. But, we won’t use it as an excuse. We need to improve our batting between the 12th and 18th over. That is something we haven’t done in the first game.”
Mandhana admitted that an insipid approach from the Indian batters resulted in a disappointing performance and the aim is to put the score around 160 to 170 if they are to beat a quality side.
“Given the standard of T20 cricket these days, we have to score somewhere around 160 to 170 to be on the safer side. But that also depends on the nature of the wicket,” Mandhana said.
“Post the CWG (Commonwealth Games), I feel it is Harman, Jemimah (Rodrigues) or my responsibility to take the team through in the 20 overs. But given it is T20 cricket, we have introduced the likes of (Dayalan) Hemalatha and Kiran (Navgire) into the mix. But, you have to give them time to perform to get to that level,” she added.
‘Medical team is still examining Radha’s injury’
Radha Yadav, whose diving effort in the second over of England’s chase in the first game resulted in a shoulder injury, seems to be doubtful for the second game.
The 23-year-old left the field in pain and her departure also meant India was a bowler short.
“The medical team is still examining Radha Yadav’s condition. We will only get to know her availability before the match,” Smriti said.