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Women’s T20 World Cup: Can India crack the Australia code? | Cricket News – Times of India


Harmanpreet‘s team will have to overcome patchy form and formidable opposition to make the final
In less than three weeks, Smriti Mandhana will captain Australian duo Ellyse Perry and Megan Schutt at the Royal Challengers Bangalore, while Beth Mooney, Annabel Sutherland, Ashleigh Gardner and Georgia Wareham will be Harleen Deol‘s teammates at Gujarat Giants. Likewise, Meg Lanning will join forces with Jemimah Rodrigues, Shafali Verma and Shikha Pandey at Delhi Capitals.
But on Thursday, players from the two countries will be on either side of the battle line in the big-ticket semifinal of the T20 Women’s World Cup in Cape Town.

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The India-Australia combination is a heady mix in the Women’s Premier League, with 14 players coming in from Down Under. It is also a reflection of their popularity, brand of cricket and the value they add to the sport. The rivalry between them has generated a lot of interest. A case in point is the packed stadiums in Mumbai during Lanning and her team’s tour of India in December last year.
There is never a dull moment when the two teams meet and it is going to be no different in Newlands. For India, the Australians have been like an Isis Adventure – one of the hardest puzzles in the world.

In 30 T20Is, Australia enjoy a 22:7 win-loss record against India, with one match being abandoned. This is a repeat of the 2020 edition of the tournament and India will go all out to ensure the results are different this time, after enduring a crushing 85-run loss in the final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground three years ago.
The teams have taken contrasting routes to the last four. Australia, the defending champions, maintained an all-win record en route to topping Group I, while India, who finished second in Group 2, lost one match to England.

Australia are hot favourites, but India have the resources to down their mighty opponents. But, for that to happen they must come together as a team and bring their A game to the fore at the high-scoring venue.
The Women in Blue have been patchy, riding on individual brilliance to get past the finish line. One of the biggest concerns for them will be the form of skipper Harmanpreet, who has 66 runs from four matches at a strike rate of 82.5. She will have to lead from the front with the willow and complement the form of her deputy Smriti (149 runs; 3 matches).

The fact that most of the batters have blown hot and cold will not work for India against Australia, who outplayed Harmanpreet & Co in the knockouts and final of the Commonwealth Games last year. The bowlers have been no different. Barring medium pacer Renuka Singh, none of the bowlers have been consistent.

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Women’s T20 World Cup: India have task cut out against Australia

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