BCCI Announces Squad For Women’s T20 World Cup
The Indian men’s team is currently getting most of the attention as they are involved in back-to-back home series against Sri Lanka and Australia followed by a tour to New Zealand in January 2020. Flying under the radar is the women’s cricket team who are currently preparing for the upcoming T20 World Cup that takes place in February.
Women’s T20 World Cup
The BCCI announced a 16 member squad who will tour Australia and take part in the T20 World Cup. The tournament runs from 21 February to 8 March 2020.
The T20 World Cup will see 10 teams take part. Group A will consist of Australia, India, New Zealand, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. Group B will see England, South Africa, Pakistan, Thailand and the West Indies battle it out.
The first match of the T20 World Cup will see hosts Australia take on India on Feb 21. The T20 World Cup final will take place at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and will held on International Women’s Day.
Australia will start as the favourites as they are currently ranked as the number 1 T20 team based on the ICC T20 rankings. They will also have the home advantage in their favour. Their biggest threat will be England who occupies the second spot on the ICC T20 table. India currently ranks 4th. They will have to play really well f they are going to push for a spot in the final.
Harmanpreet Kaur Will Captain
The BCCI has chosen a strong 16 member squad for the T20 World Cup. Harmanpreet Kaur has the responsibility of captaining the side. The women’s team have not done well in T20 cricket in recent times. They have won 8 out of their last 15 matches since the T20 World Cup in 2018.
The BCCI has done a good job in scheduling a tri-series in Australia ahead of the World Cup. India, England and Australia will battle it out in a tri-series competition that will give all three sides to much needed match practice ahead of the T20 World Cup.
Kaur knows that this is going to be one of her biggest tests as captain. Women’s cricket in India is now getting more exposure than ever before. A good performance by the women’s team can do wonders for women’s cricket in the country. She will have to lead from the front and improve her leadership skills if India are going to compete with England and Australia.
India Women’s T20 World Cup Squad
The squad for the T20 World Cup is as follows:
Harmanpreet Kaur (captain), Veda Krishnamurthy, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodriguez, Shafali Verma, Harleen Deol, Richa Ghosh, Deepti Sharma, Tania Bhatia, Radha Yadav, Poonam Yadav, Rajeshwari Gaikwad, Pooja Vastrakar, Shikha Pandey and Arundhati Reddy.
Those who follow the Indian women’s cricket team would have more or less expected these players to be picked. The two notable omissions are right arm pacer Mansi Joshi and all-rounder Anuja Patil.
The selectors decided to go with a young team which relies heavily on spin. The youngest player in the squad is 15 year old Shafali Verma. She had a great run in the recently concluded T20 Challenger Trophy. Verma finished with an average of over 47 and piled up 189 runs.
There is also 16 year old Richa Ghosh who may not make the playing XI but is a great back up option. Jemimah Rodriguez is another player who has the ability to change the course of a game and become the next big women’s cricketing superstar in India.