After losing their first ODI against England on Sunday, Indian team ODI skipper Mithali Raj spoke up on the issues she thinks the team needs to address. One of such issues being that of dot balls.
Losing the toss and getting to bat first, India played posted a modest 201 at the loss of eight wickets in 50 overs, facing 181 dot balls. England comfortably chased the target with 91 balls remaining. The Indian skipper said that they lacked intent in all three departments.
“I think we lacked intent in all three departments. Could have had another from the top five stays there and get some runs. The bowlers could have been more consistent in their runs. The bowlers could have been more consistent in their lengths, and our fielding needs a lot of effort. [Dot balls?] Yes, we need to look into that aspect and keep on rotating strike,” Raj said during the post-match virtual press conference of the first ODI.
Mithali Raj was the only one who scored beyond fifty, playing a clinical 72 runs off 108 deliveries to help the team complete 200 runs. India lost early wickets of Smriti Mandhana (10), Shafali Verma (15), and Punam Raut (32). The remaining batters failed to score runs, having facing many dot balls.
“We need our top-5 batters to get runs. We also need to understand that England seamers are very experienced. They know how to bowl in their conditions,” she said her side’s seam bowlers were not up to the mark.
“It puts pressure (on the opposition) if we can get early wickets. If we don’t get wickets from the seamers it puts pressure on the spinners. So we need to groom fast bowlers other than Jhulan. They should learn how to understand conditions and bowl well accordingly,” she added.
“But we just can’t go bang bang and lose wickets. We need to know when to push the acceleration and how to get that. It is important to back players, especially those who have done well in the past. Sometimes it is a gamble to play stroke players. But we need to back players to groom them keeping the World Cup in mind,” Hinting that there might be a few changes in the composition of the playing eleven in the second ODI, Raj said the team management also needs to back the players’ side by side.
Leading the charge for England, opener Tammy Beaumont, played and unbeaten on knock of 87 runs. Natalie Sciver stitched a partnership of 119 runs with her, scoring an unbeaten 74 runs. Losing only two wickets, England got to a breezy victory.
England 202 for 2 (Beamont 87*, Sciver 74*)
India 201 for 8 (Raj 72, Raut 32, Ecclestone 3-40, Shrubsole 2-33, Brunt 2-35)
England won by 8 wickets
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