Navi Mumbai, Jan 6: After India secured a thumping nine-wicket win over Australia in the T20I series opener at the DY Patil Stadium, captain Harmanpreet Kaur said her team was great in all three departments of the game.
Fast-bowler Titas Sadhu's four-wicket haul helped India bowl Australia out for 141, despite Phoebe Litchfield top-scoring with 49. In reply, openers Smriti Mandhana and Shafali Verma slammed fifties each to put a partnership of 137 runs for the first wicket.
Though Smriti fell for 52, Shafali remained unbeaten on 64, as India got an important win after being blanked 3-0 in the ODI series at Wankhede Stadium. "We were up to the mark in three departments. We have been working hard on fielding, sometimes results won't come, but everyone was pumped and good to see all fielders working on them.”
“Credit goes to fielding coach, he said Jemi (Jemimah Rodrigues) will stand at point because we conceded a lot there. Everyone knows where they will be. We had given her (Phoebe) too many chances in the ODIs, I just kept telling my bowlers, keep bowling right areas and Amanjot got her (out).”
Talking of Titas’ performance, Harmanpreet said she was a last-minute addition at the behest of head coach Amol Muzumdar. “It was a last-moment change, credit to our coach. In the last moment we thought if we could bring in an extra seamer that would be helpful, she did well. We know they are a good side. The way bowling unit bowled, we would love to do the same thing (in future)."
Smriti said having frank conversations after the ODI series loss was a driving force behind the T20I series opening win, while having words of praise for young Titas. "We were disappointed with the ODI performance. Really pleased with the team, especially bowling. Getting them all out after conceding 300+ runs in the last match was amazing.”
“In the last two days, we analysed a lot in what went wrong .We definitely had a good one-hour meeting. Our four-seam attack worked. Titas bowled really well after the Asian Games. Really happy for her. She comes from Bengal, and Bengal has given us a legendary bowler in Jhulu (Jhulan Goswami) di.”
We should not compare, she is very sorted, she tells this is where I want to bowl and this is the field for me. She has that clarity. It's a great thing to have, hope she continues the same way. I remember telling coach (Amol Muzumdar) to not be soft on us during the meeting and to be as harsh as he is on the Mumbai Ranji team."
Australia skipper Alyssa Healy felt her team needs to make quick adjustments and be better tactically to bounce back in the second T20I happening on Sunday. “Not ideal. We didn't really play very well. I think losing wickets upfront and throughout cost us. Normally, a few good partnership will get us through the game. We bat very much down to nine.”
“We want to keep pushing and adjusting to conditions. (on losing toss): it would have been nice to have to bowl first. They hit impeccable lengths really early and made it really difficult for us. We have to adjust for that and change a few things tactics wise. We just have to adjust, someone has to bowl second." (IANS)