With the bowling unit (especially the younger pacers) and middle order under the scanner, senior India cricketer Jhulan Goswami said on Tuesday that it was just a matter of time before the team clicks as a unit.
Speaking ahead of the second One Day International against England on Wednesday in Taunton, Goswami insisted that the batters under pressure were one good innings away from finding their groove.
She also added that the team is trying out various options during the England series and beyond to check out what is the best possible combination that can be fielded going into next year’s ICC Women’s ODI World Cup in New Zealand.
India’s senior middle-order batters like skipper Mithali Raj, Punam Raut, and Harmanpreet Kaur were all under the scanner for their strike rates in the first ODI defeat. India played as many as 30 overs worth of dot deliveries in the match which England won by eight wickets chasing a modest target of 202.
Goswami didn’t give a definitive answer on vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur’s batting position but indicated that a lot of options will be tried out before the World Cup in New Zealand next year.
“Well, we are trying to settle our combination. We are trying to create a few options. Now which options will click for us, we are (still) searching for that. Whatever things will happen (options we finalise), the management will take a call before the World Cup,” Goswami said on the eve of second ODI against England.
“Before the World Cup, we are trying to settle down a few things. Hopefully, in the coming matches, coming series, we will sort out all those things.”
Young Shafali Verma shouldn’t be put under immense pressure of expectation, the veteran added and said she was confident that it’s just a matter of time before the middle-order will produce impact performances expected of them in the ongoing series against England.
“Well...It’s is just the first match for Shafali. Day before yesterday, she made her debut in ODI cricket. We are expecting so much from her because that is the impact she has had,” Goswami, highest wicket-taker in ODIs, said when asked about the batting unit’s scoring rate issues.
“ We just need one good knock from the middle order. They will definitely score runs. Just these things happen in cricket,” Goswami said about consumption of 180 dot balls.
“Every day is a new day, every day is a new learning experience. One good innings from the three. Harman(Kaur) needs one good knock, we know Harman can do it. One good knock is required from our middle-order,” the 38-year-old reiterated.
Goswami also said that as a bowling group, they need to up their game after Tammy Beaumont and Nat Sciver gave them a real pasting in the opener with both scoring at a strike rate of 100.
“Honestly speaking, we need to come back as a bowling group strongly. We have discussed a lot of things, hopefully we can sort it out and come back strongly. You have to believe in these bowlers, they are your best bowlers, they have the ability.
“Both of our medium-pacers Shikha Pandey, Pooja Vastrakar and we have another two pacers in the side, all are very good cricketers. Shikha is coming back from a break. Pooja is playing after a long time. They are quality bowlers.
“They need a little bit of time, they will do well. Bowlers have won matches single-handedly for India in the past. We just need to give them some time, they will come back strongly. I have a lot of confidence in them,” she added.
Speaking about her own workload, Goswami said she still enjoyed bowling long spells and winning matches for the country. “I am just a youngster isn’t it? Was very excited about playing Test cricket after seven years. There was some wear and tear but important is to recover. The support staff look after us well,” Goswami said.
With PTI inputs