After India failed to capture the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 following a humbling by archrivals Pakistan in the final, another cricket team from the country has ventured on English soil in the hunt for silverware.
It’s the women’s outfit this time around, as they are gunning for a maiden Women’s World Cup (WWC) title. And with three wins in three games so far, the ladies are off to a promising start in the tournament.
It would be too early to say whether they will go all the way to lift the trophy but the chances are higher than ever before. And why not; especially, with such a great mix of youth and experience in place!
At 34, the Indian skipper might be one of the oldest members of the squad but that takes nothing away from her rich vein of form even at present. She made a record seventh consecutive half-century in the opening match of the competition vs England, and remains to be a force to reckon.
The 20-year-old is one of the most exciting talents in the tournament. And she did total justice to this badge by smashing a quickfire 90 in the England game and then following it up with a century against the West Indies. She might have missed out against Pakistan but expect more fireworks from her in the remainder of the World Cup.
The wicketkeeper has rarely received opportunities to shine bright with the bat. But it was against Pakistan that the 24-year-old made the most of her promotion to number 7 and forged a critical partnership that led India to safety. She’s also getting better behind the stumps and will be a key stabiliser in India’s tail.
The player of the match in India’s win over Pak with a five-wicket haul, Bisht has proved to be a threat even in English conditions. She is India’s frontline spinner and at 31, has enough experience now to either limit the flow of runs or go for the wickets as per the situation.
The only proper allrounder in the squad, Kaur represents the pathbreaking mould of cricketers to come through the ranks in women’s cricket. She was also the first Indian to earn a Big Bash League contract and the fact that she’s playing through a dislocated finger from the opening game, speaks for her dedication on the field.
If the BCCI were to institute a ‘Hall of Fame’ for women’s cricket in India, ESPN considers Jhulan Goswami a default selection. A decade and a half since bursting onto the scene, the highest ODI wicket taker in women’s cricket doubles up as a mentor for India’s young pacers and will be key to India’s chances in the WWC too.
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