After a batting collapse for the ages on Saturday, India women’s cricket team head coach WV Raman believes the country’s young cricketers need to work on their technical skills in order to execute their strategies during match situations.
India’s lower-order failed to score three runs in the final over in an embarrassing capitulation, gifting England a one-run win in the third T20 International and a 0-3 series whitewash here Saturday.
“Basically, first they need to work a lot on their skills,” Raman told reporters when asked if a mental conditioning coach is the need of the hour for the women’s team.
“Once the development in terms of skills happen, then all other things come into play because tactically everybody is aware of what needs to be done, but tactics cannot be executed unless the technical base is good enough,” he added after the final T20I.
Chasing a modest 120-run target, India looked in control as they needed just three runs in the final over but they failed to achieve it after Kate Cross dismissed Bharati Fulmali and Anuja Patil on successive deliveries, leaving Mithali Raj stranded at the other end.
Coming out to bat at number four, Mithali scored unbeaten 30 off 32 balls to take the team close to victory.
“We had a chat about what is she comfortable doing and what suits the side as well. Since Harman (Harmanpreet Kaur) was not here, we needed someone with experience in the middle order. That’s the reason she stuck to her slot of number four,” Raman said about Mithali’s batting position.
“Quite obviously, she also needs to be backed up by others. Unfortunately, that kind of support did not come. It is all a case of what a specific player can bring to the table and how it suits the team’s need. That’s how things will happen.”
Despite the 0-3 whitewash in the T20 series, Raman said he was not crestfallen and is looking ahead to the future with many youngsters coming up.
“It is just that the newcomers need to get a little bit of experience to know what to do under a little bit of pressure and challenge. Once that improves, I think it will be a very good situation for us in the future,” he said.
“So I am not totally either sulking or mourning about it. From here on, the only way is up. That is the way I would look at it.”
India have lost seven matches on the trot in the shortest format since the World T20 semi-final. That has included two whitewashes, one against New Zealand and now against England.
“They have been playing good cricket,” Raman said, “but in T20 what you need is smart cricket under pressure. This is a young side, will learn along the way. Even though the scoreline says 3-0, not playing as well as we could, yet it was not a total washout in terms of the way we lost it. That’s heartening.
“Overall, the bowlers have done a fantastic job [in the ODI and T20I series combined]. Spinners, and even the fast bowlers in the ODIs, not that the fast bowlers were bad here, except one phase here and there,” the former India cricketer said.
“Then the girls have fielded really well. It’s just that the newcomers getting a little bit of experience to know what to do under a little bit of pressure and challenge. Once that improves, I think it will be a very good situation for us in the future.”