The repeated failure of India’s middle-order to rise to the occasion has prompted Indian vice-captain Smriti Mandhana to believe that she needs to “practically bat for 18 to 20 overs” in order to keep the team in the hunt during stiff chases.
Mandhana smashed a 58-run knock off 34 balls but the Indian women’s cricket team failed to make it count as they were dismissed for 136 all out while chasing a target of 160.
“My wicket along with Jemimah’s turned out to be crucial. If you get out back-to-back in T20, it proves costly. When you are chasing 160 and the run-rate is above 7 or 8, next time we have to plan and play better. It didn’t work out today,” Mandhana said after the match.
“Practically, I would say I have to bat till 20 overs, that is the best option. The more I bat till 18 overs, we won’t collapse because if the top three or 4 batters can bat till the 18-20th overs then rest can revolve around them, so tactically that is what I will try to do,” Mandhana said but it was also an indication that the current middle-order lacks a finisher.
Mandhana bettered her record of fastest fifty by an Indian en route to a 58-run knock off 34 balls.
Asked if was her best, she responded, “You never know what your best is. I can’t limit myself to a 60 and say it is my best. If I can chase my total and if I win matches for India, then only it would be my best.”
Down 0-1 in the three-T20I series, Mandhana said the team will be under pressure.