Following in the footsteps of the great Mithali Raj is a difficult task for anyone, but it’s something India women’s white ball captain Harmanpreet Kaur is determined to do well ahead of next month’s Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. While Harmanpreet has been India’s T20 captain since 2018, the experienced 33-year-old now takes the reins from Mithali for the 50-plus cricket ahead of a vital spell for the Indian women’s side. With Mithali retired and the likes of Jhulan Goswami and Sneh Rana out for their next tour of Sri Lanka, it’s a new Indian side that will be looking to bounce back quickly from a disappointing ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup campaign in Nova Scotia. Zealand earlier this year.
India failed to qualify for the Round of 16 of this tournament and now Harmanpreet must find new ways to reinvigorate their squad ahead of next year’s Commonwealth Games and T20 World Cup in South Africa. South.
The first port of call for Harmanpreet is six white ball games against Sri Lanka (three T20Is and three ODIs) from Thursday, before India’s attention turns to the Commonwealth Games which start at the end of July.
But Harmanpreet said she would rotate her squad as much as she could in order to have a stable XI in time for India’s Commonwealth Games opener against Australia on July 29.
“We only have three T20s here (in Sri Lanka) and it’s going to be very difficult to give everyone an equal chance,” Harmanpreet said.
“We will try to cover all areas to help everyone prepare (for the Commonwealth Games).”
India’s squad to face Sri Lanka are packed with proven performers, while youngsters Jemimah Rodrigues and Simran Bahadur are among the players keen to show their wares after missing out on selection for the 50-year-old World Cup earlier this year.
“We spoke to the players and told them whatever opportunity they had, they had to be ready,” Harmanpreet noted.
“Only two people can go open (an inning), but everyone has to be ready to hit any number and that’s what you need from your batting unit.”
And while Harmanpreet will do her best to emulate Mithali as India’s new captain in all game formats, she knows it will be impossible to match everything the former India skipper has done over the course of his illustrious career.
“Mithali has done a good job for women’s cricket and I don’t think there is anyone who can replace her,” Harmanpreet said.
“We are working hard on our squad where we can create combinations but if we talk about Mithali, I don’t think there is anyone who can take her place and we will always miss her in our dressing room.”
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