IND-W vs AUS-W 2nd T20I: India Women eye another dominant show after rain-washed opening game

The second of the three T20Is between India and Australia Women will be played tomorrow at Carrara Oval, Queensland. Bolstered by Jemimah Rodrigues’ return to form, the visitors will look to come out all guns blazing after rain played spoilsport in the opening game on Thursday.

India didn’t have a good start as they lost the first two ODIs but have looked really good since then. They secured their first win of the tour in the 3rd ODI, bringing an end to the Australia’s 26 ODIs winning streak. The visitors then produced another dominant show in the one-off four-day pink ball Test, which was ended in draw due to rain interruptions.

Put into bat, Harmanpreet and Co. posted a good total of 131 for 4 in 15.2 overs after losing three wickets inside the powerplay before rain played spoilsport. Ashley Gardner picked up two wickets while S Molineux and G Wareham returned with one wicket each for the home side.

For India, flamboyant opener Smriti Mandhana and her partner in crime Shafali Verma have been in good form throughout the tour. Smriti Mandhana will once again be crucial in providing a solid start, having scored her maiden Test ton in the drawn day-night Test. Skipper Harmanpreet Kaur’s return after missing out the ODIs and the Test due to injury will bolster the middle order consisting of Jemimah Rodrigues and the young duo of Yastika Bhatia and Richa Ghosh.

Criticised for her consistent failures and after losing her place in the 50-over set-up, Jemimah made a sensational comeback with an unbeaten 49 off 36 balls in the first T20I and will be looking to continue the same. In the bowling department, veteran seamer Shikha Pandey will carry the onus providing early breakthroughs, while the likes of Renuka Singh, Meghna Singh and spinners Pooja Vastrakar, Rajeshwari Gayakwad and Deepti Sharma will also be crucial. Meghna Singh had a wonderful outing in ODIs.

India Women Playing 11

Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Yastika Bhatia, Richa Ghosh (wk), Pooja Vastrakar, Deepti Sharma, Shikha Pandey, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Renuka Singh

Australia, on the other hand, boast of a number of quality all-rounders in the shorter formats and the hosts will depend on them extend their lead in the series. The hosts lead the multi-format series 7-5 with two T20Is remaining. All-rounder Tahlia McGrath, who was impressive in the pink ball Test, conceded 14 runs on debut in the only over she bowled on Thursday and she will be itching to prove a point. Young Hannah Darlington too will look to grab the opportunities. The hosts also have plenty of experience in Ellyse Perry, Alyssa Healy, Meg Lanning, Ashleigh Gardner and Beth Mooney to trouble the visitors.

Australia Women Playing 11

Alyssa Healy (wk), Beth Mooney, Meg Lanning (c), Ashleigh Gardner, Ellyse Perry, Tahlia McGrath, Nicola Carey, Sophie Molineux, Georgia Wareham, Hannah Darlington, Tayla Vlaeminck