We are not even at the halfway stage of the 2018 cricketing season. It clearly seems there’s no stopping India’s women’s cricket team. The Indian women’s team powered by experienced duo of Mithali Raj and Harmanpreet Kaur has already lapped up a few honours in an engaging season. India’s first triumph- a memorable one- came in the Protean land, miles away from playing on the comfort of sub-continental pitches. Amplified by a fiery brand of batting demonstrated by Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues and co., India sealed a wonderful overseas series that many didn’t see coming.
Across both departments of the game, India bettered a mix-up of dominant names in the South African series. Surely, it’s never easy to get the better of a side that includes Marizanne Kapp, Dane Van Neikerk, Shabnim Ismail and Mignon Du Preez among others.
Riding high on the form of batswomen
Next up, the winning form continued as India engaged with England on home turf. Amid the challenging heat of Nagpur, India raised mercury on it’s vanquished as the visitors lost the ODI series by a margin of 2-1. While the batswomen continued piling on the runs, the spinners- Deepti Sharma, Ekta Bisht and Poonam Yadav- were among the pick of the bowlers.
Anyone who’s followed India Women’s cricket team closely, it’s not hard to miss the importance of bowlers. In lean scoring contests, such as the 2nd and 3rd ODIs at Nagpur, slow off-spinners and googly specialists bailed India out. And now, there’s a reason to cheer.
BCCI makes an important announcement regarding bowling coach
In a first for India Women’s cricket team, BCCI has shared that there would be a bowling coach to assist the team further. The BCCI is set to invite applications for the post. And one feels, the decision will help galvanize the form of bowlers that have already been in some form. This comes as an important piece of news at a time where spinners are increasingly shaping games.
Even as cricket is universally skewed as a batswoman’s game, it’s the pacers and slower bowlers who have been calling the shots. We’ve seen in Feb-March and the months prior, how the likes of Ekta Bisht and Poonam Yadav spun a magic web in South Africa. It was fitting to see Shabnam Ismail and Dane Van Niekerk respond solidly to India’s challenge even as the Proteas women ended on the losing side.
Why bowling coach is needed for India Women’s team
Much to the chagrin of willow-wielders, the bowlers today are calling the shots. In the tri-series featuring Australia and England, and the ODI series against Australia, the likes of Jess Jonassen and Sophie Ecclestone troubled India. And while the women’s side has no dearth of batting anchors- Mithali Raj, Harmanpreet Kaur, with plenty in the offing, the bowling department could glow with some assistance. There’s hardly a doubt about the interesting mix of talent India already possesses. When not helmed by pace-express Jhulan Goswami, an old guard, there’re the likes of Shikha Pandey to lead the attack. Moreover, bowlers, from a global perspective, have really risen to the core. It was heartening to see the sight of biggies- Natalie Sciver, Anya Shrubsole, Ellyse Perry, Sana Mir flexing arms alongside noted batswomen.
With BCCI’s prudent and timely move, Indian side could be bolstered by the presence of a specialist. And it seems, the search for an ideal candidate may not be an onerous one. The board has stated the applicants need not have an international background.