Mandhana Faces Task, Which Is The Combat Of The India'is Losing Spree > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more
Cricket news - Mandhana faces task of halting India's losing spree
It's been a tough initiation into captaincy for Smriti Mandhana, and the immediate challenge next going into game 2 is to halt India's five-match losing spree in the format and keep the T20I series alive in Guwahati. England handed a comprehensive 41-run defeat to the hosts in the series-opener on Monday and, come Thursday, would be itching to avenge their ODI loss by sealing the T20I series with a game to spare.
England might have struggled to cope with India's spin attack in the one-dayers on the slow wicket of Wankhede, but once they were presented a wicket that aided stroke-play, the visitors rendered two of India's otherwise reliable spinners - Deepti Sharma and Radha Yadav - ineffective. In fact, barring in-form Shikha Pandey and Poonam Yadav, none of the Indian bowlers were able to contain the English top order that piled on runs at will.
Heather Knight, in the middle of her brutal assault, hit Arundhati Reddy for five consecutive boundaries in an over as England racked up 160 from their allotted overs, before defending it rather easily. England would be particularly happy to see Tammy Beaumont back amongst runs (and as a reliable back-up keeper!) after an ordinary ODI series, and the fact that left-arm spinner Linsey Smith gave India a taste of their own medicine.
India's chances of chasing down the stiff target hinged on the kind of platform the in-form Mandhana and Jemimah Rodrigues laid, the kind the team has become increasingly dependent on. However, the pair fell for their first single-digit score in nine and five innings respectively, on back-to-back deliveries to Smith, to peg India back early in their chase. The encouraging signs though were the runs coming from other than the likes of Mandhana, Rodrigues and Mithali Raj. India's four successive losses since the 2018 T20 WC had followed a similar pattern of hurtling to defeats due to middle-order collapses. But the fight shown in their fifth loss had a silver lining for India going ahead and in building towards the 2020 T20 WC.
When: 2nd T20I on Thursday, March 7, 2019, at 11am IST | 5:30 am GMT
Where: Barsapara Cricket Stadium, Guwahati
What to expect: A bright and sunny Thursday in store for the game day, alongwith a pitch that promises to live upto T20 expectations.
India: The stand-in skipper might have cautioned against aimless experimentation but the hosts might be tempted to audition uncapped left-hand pacer Komal Zanzad, who troubled England's quality batters in the warm-up one-dayer, in place of Reddy, who was carted all round the park in the series opener.
England: Amy Jones was back on the field, keeping wickets in England's pre-match practice session and might draft back into the XI after sitting out of game 1 due to illness.
What they said
India: Smriti Mandhana (C), Mithali Raj, Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Taniya Bhatia, Anuja Patil, Shikha Pandey, Bharati Fulmali, Arundhati Reddy, Komal Zanzad, Poonam Yadav, Ekta Bisht, Radha Yadav, Veda Krishnamurthy, Harleen Deol
England: Tammy Beaumont, Katherine Brunt, Kate Cross, Sophia Dunkley Brown, Freya Davies, Georgia Elwiss, Amy Ellen Jones, Heather Knight (C), Laura Marsh, Natalie Sciver, Anya Shrubsole, Linsey Smith, Lauren Winfield, Danielle Wyatt, Alex Hartley
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