After going down in the series opener, India will look to bounce back in the second One-Day International against New Zealand in Queenstown on Tuesday.
Suzie Bates hit a magnificent century at the top of the order to help New Zealand post a total of 275 in the first ODI. India captain Mithali Raj scored a half-century but the visitors struggled for partnerships and eventually lost the match by 62 runs.
Raj scored a well-crafted 59 while Yastika Bhatia made 41.The other batters, including vice captain Harmanpreet Kaur (10 off 22 balls), didn’t make any significant contribution as Jess Kerr bagged a four-for.
India’s cause was not helped by the absence of senior opener Smriti Mandhana who missed the first ODI due to extended quarantine, along with Renuka Singh and Meghana Singh.
Mandhana and Meghana are not likely to be available for the second ODI either but pacer Renuka could make the team as she is out of her quarantine.
“We should be able to score 270 because that’s the standard now in women’s cricket,” skipper Raj said after the first ODI.
She also wanted her bowlers to get used to the New Zealand conditions at a faster pace.
“It’s important to get used to the conditions, it’s in a way good that we are playing a series before World Cup. We definitely made a comeback in later half of first innings. It took time for the bowlers to get used to windy conditions, because there was a lot of breeze in the middle,” she said.
India: Mithali Raj (c), Harmanpreet Kaur (vc), Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh (wk), Sneh Rana, Jhulan Goswami, Pooja Vastrakar, Taniya Bhatia (wk), Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Simran Dil Bahadur.
New Zealand: Sophie Devine (c), Amy Satterthwaite (vc), Suzie Bates, Lauren Down, Maddy Green, Brooke Halliday, Hayley Jensen, Fran Jonas, Jess Kerr, Melie Kerr, Frankie Mackay, Rosemary Mair, Katey Martin, Hannah Rowe, Lea Tahuhu.
Match starts at 3.30 am IST on Tuesday.
(With inputs from PTI)