India vs Pakistan, ICC Women’s World Cup 2017: Knew it was just a matter of taking early breakthroughs, says Mithali Raj

Indian women's cricket team thumped Pakistan by 95 runs in the ICC Women's World Cup 2017 on Sunday. Indian skipper while talking during the post-match press conference revealed how her team was on backfoot after losing Smriti Mandhana in the early part of the innings.

By: Express Web Desk | Published:July 3, 2017 1:19 pm
India vs Pakistan, Mithali Raj, Sana Mir India bundled out Pakistan for 74. (Source: AP)

Indian women’s cricket team thumped Pakistan by 95 runs in the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 on Sunday. Indian skipper while talking during the post-match press conference revealed how her team was on backfoot after losing Smriti Mandhana in the early part of the innings and hailed the 34-run partnership between Sushma Verma and Jhulan Goswami for the seventh wicket.

“When you lose first wicket in first 10 overs, it naturally puts us on the backfoot. Though there were decent partnerships but there were two back-to-back wickets so we were on the backfoot,” Mithali told.

“The advice or suggestion that we gave to the batters was to play till the 40th over but unfortunately again we lost wickets and in the end we had Sushma and Jhulan, those runs were crucial because it got us to 170 and we were looking for that score when we lost the top 4,” Mithali said.

Talking about the target, the Indian skipper emphasised that the 170-run mark was enough to put up a fight and grabbing early breakthroughs would play a crucial role for India.

“When we reached 170, I knew it was just a matter of taking those early breakthroughs because no matter how good a chasing team, there is always pressure of a good start even if you are chasing 150. The wicket did deteriorate later on because the spinners did got a lot of turn,” she added.

Mentioning about the upcoming matches, Raj said that all matches are equally important for her side.

“It is important that we got this opportunity to reflect on our batting order because the next matches are equally important for the team,” she told.

On the other side, Pakistan skipper Sana Mir appreciated her side’s bowling performance and admitted that a better batting display could have produced a better game for them.

“This has been our best bowling performance against India in ODIs. In the last few overs we leaked 10 or 20 runs, but otherwise it was a very good bowling performance. With a better batting performance we could have had a better game,” she said.

Talking about Baig, Mir said that she is one player who brings in the energy in the team when they are on the field.

“Diana Baig brings a spark to the team (in the field), she’s a wonderful athlete and the way she bowled, as a captain I’m very proud. Nashra (Sandhu) was our key bowler in the qualifiers before coming to the World Cup and again she proved to be really good today. “I think the top order played too many cross-batted shots and against a good bowling line-up, there’s no future if you play cross-batted shots,” Sana said.

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