Former coach Raman backs the girls to win the T20I series

Raman feels Jemimah Rodrigues’ fabulous run in The Hundred in England augurs well for the team.

Raman feels Jemimah Rodrigues’ fabulous run in The Hundred in England augurs well for the team.   -  Prashant Nakwe

The women in blue adapt to different formats well. Even when they get to wear whites, once in a blue moon.

That aspect about the team has pleased their former coach W.V. Raman most. “They adapt to different formats within such a short time and we shouldn’t forget that they are not playing as regularly they used to before the pandemic,” he told Sportstar during an online interview on Tuesday. “Besides, they are also living in a bubble. It is not easy.”

Raman, who was in charge of the team till early this year, believes India can do well in the T20I series, which starts at Carrara on Thursday. It was, in fact, India that stopped Australia’s three-year streak of 26 ODI wins, shortly before the Day/Night Test.

“If anybody could beat this Australian women’s team, it is India,” he said. “Australia is formidable in the shorter formats because they have a plethora of multi-dimensional cricketers.”

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“The Indians have done that beginning with that onslaught from Harmanpreet Kaur in the 2017 World Cup (semifinal),” said the former Test opener. “The respect Australian cricket has for India is reflected by the large number of our girls playing in the Women’s Big Bash League.”

Six of them have been signed up for this season. “We could even see that number going to double figures in a year or two,” he said.

He thinks the way India has progressed as a T20 team is remarkable. “Where they are today, from a side which didn’t know how to play the T20 format (two or three years ago), is incredible,” he said. “Imagine chasing down a target of (close to) 180 (against Australia) in the Tri-series before the T20 World Cup last year. Not many would have thought India would do that, but they did.”

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He feels Jemimah Rodrigues’ fabulous run in The Hundred in England augurs well for the team. “She brings in that pocket dynamo quality of hers,” he said. “She is busy as a batter, gives a lot of encouragement to the bowlers and is a terrific fielder.”

Looking back at the Test, he believes it was a winning draw for India, if ever there was one. “If at all anything could be said (critically), they could have tried to get some quick runs on day three and put pressure on Australia.”

(The first India-Australia T20I will be aired on Sony Six and Sony Ten 4 from 2.10 p.m. on October 7)

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