Published: Release date – 23:11, Tue – 1, 21 June
Mumbai: A trip with the Indian men’s national team will be a good opportunity for inexperienced players to consider the rigor of test cricket ahead of the one-off match against England starting June 16, coxswain Mithali Raj said on Tuesday.
The women’s cricket team, which is in quarantine in Mumbai, will travel to the United Kingdom on Wednesday with the men’s team for a month-long series.
Asked if it would be an opportunity to share notes, Mithali said: “Yes, I’m sure the girls have been interacting whenever they cross, it’s good to have them around because they’ve played a lot in the UK.”
“You can ask them questions and they can help because most girls are playing this format for the first time, so it can really help them if they talk to them and gain experience on their tours,” she said during a virtual pre-out press conference.
The one-off test in Bristol from June 16 will be the first in seven years that the women’s team will play the longest format. Two T20 Internationals and three ODIs will follow.
The men’s national team will play the final of the World Cup against New Zealand on June 18, followed by a full series against England.
“I think it’s great to play the test, either at home or away. “Sometimes it’s nice to just go without luggage and play and enjoy the atmosphere,” said Mithali.
“It’s good to have girls playing for the first time and girls who have played in the past, maybe (can) share some experience of what 2014 was like.
“I guess two consecutive rehearsal matches touring England and Australia could give a lot of exposure to the current pitch and if that can be carried over to the coming years, it will be great for the sport.”
Veteran Jhulan Goswami will lead the attack at a pace, and Mithali believes it will help the young beaters on the team.
“It’s important to win the game, she needs time to play there in the middle, as the most popular player, it’s important to keep her in the thick of things, but if she needs a break, it’s completely up to her,” Mithali said.
“But knowing Jhulan, she will want to play every game, and as captain she would also like to have her in the field, so the young fast bowlers in the flank will get a lot of help if they have her on the ground.”
A test jersey for Indians was recently introduced.
Mithali said the event was “an occasion to make the players feel special”. “… I feel that this is the most challenging, most appreciated and oldest format. It has its old charm, so it’s a special moment for the girls, “she said.
“There’s excitement in the group and it’s important to have an idea of what Test means to the team and the importance of former cricketers who have kept the sport alive for future generations.”
Bigger goals, bigger picture: Ramesh Powar
Mumbai: Indian women’s national team head coach Ramesh Powar said on Tuesday that he buried the axes of war with coxswain Mithali Rai in their attempt to move out of a very public conflict in 2018, with the common goal of taking the team to greater heights.
The former Indian off-spinner has returned to the helm after being sacked in 2018 when India lost its T20 World Cup semi-finals to England in the West Indies and the animosity between the selectors and the captain came to the fore.
“I would like to stop speculation about what is happening. We communicated well, otherwise I would not have come to women’s cricket ‘, said Powar on the eve of their team’s departure for a one-month tour of the United Kingdom.
“There are bigger goals, a bigger picture, responsibility and opportunity,” Powar tried to put things into perspective.
The coach is convinced that with the continuation of the women’s cricket test for India it is an amazing opportunity for this crowd of players to take the game forward.
“This is a great opportunity for me, Mithali, for the whole group, to take women’s cricket to another level, where BCCI supports us.”
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