Defending the series against Australia is a difficult task for the Indian women’s team

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The Indian women’s cricket team, which has excelled in every aspect of the game so far, needs its top order for its bowlers to show a form against Australia in the second ODI here on Friday.

India need Shafali Verma and Smriti Mandana to put pressure on Australia after taking a nine-wicket haul in the opening match of the three-match series.

Both starters have the firepower to take on the match attack and they need to make sure Ellis Perry and Darcy Brown don’t dominate the series-opening match.

The fast bowling pair cleaned up India’s top-order in the practice match in Brisbane and the first ODI on Monday to record Australia’s 25th consecutive victory. Success sequence.

Once the aggressive Shafali and Smriti returned to the hut without much contribution, the Indian team was left to do damage control instead of pressing the accelerator button.

One of these starters should bat deeply and the middle order led by captain Mithali Raj should also show more interest in scoring runs at a good pace.

Fancy vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur, who missed the opening match due to a thumb injury, is not yet available and Deepti Sharma will have to do a lot more for the team in his absence.

The team’s batting coach, Shiv Sunder Das, confirmed that Harmanpreet has not yet recovered.

“Now she (Harmanpreet) is not feeling well. She is not available for the next game, that is the current situation,” the coach said at a pre-match press conference.

21-year-old Tenpav Yastika Patiya gave a good account of herself when she made her debut in the previous match.

Hope to score 35 against a world-class attack will help her continue on the same path.

The team has not crossed the 250 mark since landing in Australia, and scores below that are not enough to bother the hosts.

The Australian top-order is packed with proven artists like Rachel Haynes, Alyssa Healy and Captain McLanning.

Haynes scored 65 (warm up game) and 93, while Healy (77 in the first ODI) hit a fifty. However, after being hit in the right elbow during a training session, Haynes became skeptical of the game.

The Indian bowlers, led by Julan Goswami, have to bat early because having bats does not work.

If the Indian team does not win the match on Friday, they will miss the third consecutive series of defeats against South Africa and England.

Teams (from):

India: Mithali Raj (capt), Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Smriti Mandana, Shafali Verma, Punam Rawat, Jemima Rodriguez, Deepti Sharma, Sne Rana, Yastika Patia, Tania Patia (wicket keeper), Shika Pandey, Julan Pooja Vastragar, Rajeswari Kayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Richa Ghosh, Ekta Bisht.

Australia: McLanning (capt), Rachel Haynes (vice-captain), Darcy Brown, Maidlan Brown, Stella Campbell, Nicola Gary, Hannah Darlington, Ashley Gardner, Alyssa Healy, Dahlia McGrath, Sophie Molinex, Beth Mohr, , Annabelle Sutherland, Tayla Wleming, Georgia Werham.

The match starts at 10:40 am (IST).





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