A solid start in the first ODI has ensured Indian Women lead the ICC Women’s Championship with 8 points. A 91-run match-winning knock in the last game has helped Smriti Mandhana move to the 7th spot in the Women’s ODI rankings. Captain Harmanpreet Kaur, too, has moved up the ladder to the 9th spot.
The Canterbury challenge
An excellent bowling performance followed by an extraordinary batting display helped the Women in Blue register their first win against England Women since July 2021. Veteran pace bowler Jhulan Goswami led by example, giving away just 20 runs in her 10 overs while also picking up the important wicket of Tammy Beaumont, which reduced the English to 21/2 within the batting Powerplay.
The Canterbury wicket favours seam bowlers, so the Indian bowlers can be expected to leave their mark once again. Meghna Singh was found guilty of bowling too many full tosses in her eight-over spell in the last game, though, and needs to find the right line and length especially with the new ball. The visitors will again rely on Smriti Mandhana to give them a promising start. She has an Average of 46 against England from her eight appearances so far. The dashing southpaw has scored 368 runs in eight innings against England. The 74-run knock in the first game, on the other hand, was Harmanpreet Kaur’s highest score against England. The onus of scoring runs once again will be on Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma and Harmanpreet Kaur.
Despite of losing the first game, England will back themselves to win the series. Sophia Dunkley has been in a great touch and showed her class during the 29-run knock she played in the first match. In five matches against India, she has scored 147 runs at an Average of 49. Her performance with the bat has helped her step up in the batting order as well.
England have started the ICC Women’s Championship with a loss but have the ability to change the course of the table in no time.
Match: India vs England
Venue: St. Lawrence Ground, Canterbury, England
Date: 21 September 2022
Time: 05:30 PM
Where to watch: Sony Sports Network | SonyLIV
Pitch report & Toss
The wicket is expected to remain the same during both the innings, though the venue does tend to favour the chasing side. As a result, the side winning the toss is likely to opt to bowl first.
The average score at the venue in women’s matches is 245. The overcast conditions will favour the bowling side at the beginning and gradually the wicket will set its pace and will become favourable for the big shots.
Probable playing XIs
India: Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia (wk), Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Harleen Deol, Deepti Sharma, Sneh Rana, Pooja Vastrakar, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Meghna Singh, Jhulan Goswami
England: Emma Lamb, Tammy Beaumont, Sophia Dunkley, Alice Capsey, Danni Wyatt, Amy Jones (c & wk), Alice Davidson-Richards, Sophie Ecclestone, Charlie Dean, Kate Cross, Issy Wong
Total played: 73
India won: 32
England won: 39
No result: 2
India: Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Harmanpreet Kaur
England: Emma Lamb, Danni Wyatt, Sophia Dunkley
India: Deepti Sharma, Meghna Singh, Jhulan Goswami
England: Sophie Ecclestone, Charlie Dean, Kate Cross
Yastika Bhatia, Danni Wyatt, Smriti Mandhana, Sophia Dunkley, Emma Lamb, Harmanpreet Kaur, Alice Davidson-Richards, Sophie Ecclestone, Jhulan Goswami, Kate Cross, Meghna Singh
Captain & Vice-captain picks
Captain: Smriti Mandhana, Sophia Dunkley
Vice-captain: Kate Cross, Harmanpreet Kaur
Team India are fired up after their performance in the first ODI. However, England are a tough opponent to beat, especially with their backs against the wall. The toss will play a crucial role, as the wicket is expected to ease out with time. I back the chasing team to win.