ENG W vs IND W: Mithali Raj gives update on Shafali Verma’s debut ahead of the first Test

ENG W vs IND W: Mithali Raj gives update on Shafali Verma's debut ahead of the first Test
ENG W vs IND W: Mithali Raj gives update on Shafali Verma's debut ahead of the first Test

ENG W vs IND W: Mithali Raj gives update on Shafali Verma’s debut ahead of the first Test – Indian women’s team captain Mithali Raj has said that the playing XI for one of the Tests against England Women’s team will be taken ahead of the match. Shafali Verma is likely to make her Test debut in the match however Mithali and coach Ramesh Powar are yet to take a decision on the playing XI. 

Speaking in the virtual press conference ahead of the Test match against England which will be India’s first after seven years, Mithali Raj said,” We have not taken any decision on playing XI yet as today is our second session and we will make the call tomorrow before the game starts.”

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India and England women will lock horns in a one-off Test beginning June 16 at Bristol. After that, both sides will square off in three ODIs and three T20Is.

ENG W vs IND W: Mithali Raj also opened up about youngsters in the squad who are playing their first Test and how the Team is making efforts to help them settle down. “For someone who is making a debut, you don’t want to burden them with expectations and responsibilities. Together as a team, we will support them and we want them to enjoy playing this format,” she said. 

“I feel that this Test and the pink ball Test in Australia opens the channel to have a three format bilateral series. You ask any modern-day cricketer, they eventually want to play the longer format. Maybe in the coming years, it might lead to a World Test Championship. We have points too, in this series, so it’s going to be exciting and we’re looking forward to it,” she added. 

India is on the brink of levelling the world record of most consecutive Test match victories with Australia. India won their last three Tests against England (2)and  South Africa (1).

“I am not looking at any record. It never crossed any of our minds. We just want to go out and take it session by session. We want to get in with a good confident mind out there,” Mithali Raj said.

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ENG W vs IND W: Mithali also pointed out the difference between playing against the red ball and white ball, “It has been seven years since the last Test and in the last seven years, we have played T20s and ODIs more. Most of the players in the team has faced white ball but again it comes down to the mindset. From last week we have tried to get as many net session possible for the batters to get used to the moment of the red ball. I am sure that the players have moulded themselves for the situation.”

“The first thing that we did was we wore the whites and had a session in it so that players don’t feel alien when they step on the ground for the first Test. Ramesh made senior players talk with the youngsters so that they can calm their nerves ahead of the Test. The more we communicate the more it helps to bring the best out of the team,” Raj said.

Indian team is touring England for the first time after the 2017 50-over World Cup final. In that match, the Mithali-led side had to face a defeat at the hands of England.

ENG W vs IND W: Talking about the flashbacks of the 2017 World Cup and how have things changed from then she said,” Definitely not looking back, as we have a Test match tomorrow I want to look forward and not the opposite. From the 2017 team, most of the players are still part of the team, and that will help the side to adapt to the condition.”

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India women’s tour of England

Schedule: India women’s tour of England

Fixtures Date and Timings (IST)
India women vs England women One-off Test Jun 16-19, 3:30 PM
India women vs England women, 1st ODI June 27, 3 PM
India women vs England women, 2nd ODI June 30, 6:30 PM
India women vs England women,  3rd ODI July 3, 3 PM
India women vs England women, 1st T20I July 9, 11 PM
India women vs England women, 2nd T20I July 11, 7 PM
India women vs England women, 3rd T20I July 15, 11 PM

Squads:

India women’s ODI and Test squad: Mithali Raj (Captain), Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Punam Raut, Priya Punia, Deepti Sharma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Shafali Verma, Sneh Rana, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Indrani Roy (wicket-keeper), Jhulan Goswami, Shikha Pandey, Pooja Vastrakar, Arundhati Reddy, Poonam Yadav, Ekta Bisht, Radha Yadav.

England women’s Test squad: Heather Knight (capt), Emily Arlott, Tammy Beaumont, Katherine Brunt, Kate Cross, Freya Davies, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Georgia Elwiss, Natasha Farrant, Sarah Glenn, Amy Jones, Nathalie Sciver (vice-capt), Anya Shrubsole, Mady Villiers, Fran Wilson, Lauren Winfield-Hill.

India’s T20I squad: Heather Knight (capt), Emily Arlott, Tammy Beaumont, Katherine Brunt, Kate Cross, Freya Davies, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Georgia Elwiss, Natasha Farrant, Sarah Glenn, Amy Jones, Nathalie Sciver (vice-capt), Anya Shrubsole, Mady Villiers, Fran Wilson, Lauren Winfield-Hill.

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