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Inconsistent batting behind India's ordinary performance in Women's World Cup 2022: Anjum Chopra

New Delhi, March 26: The Indian women's cricket team has had a topsy-turvy journey in the ongoing ICC Women's Cricket World Cup 2022 in New Zealand. The Mithali Raj-led side is placed fifth in the points table with three wins and as many losses from their six league games.

Former India women's cricket team captain Anjum Chopra isn't satisfied with the Women In Blue's performance Down Under. Chopra, who was the face of Women's Cricket in India and played in six world cups, has closely followed the journey of this current Indian side.

Ahead of the Indian cricket team's must-win game against South Africa, MyKhel caught up with the cricketer-turned-commentator reviewed the overall performance of coach Ramesh Powar's side. Chopra also talked about Jhulan Goswami and the ongoing debate over Women's IPL.

Here are the excerpts:

MyKhel: How would you rate the performance of the Indian Team in the tournament so far?

Anjum Chopra: The performance has been below par as the players have been inconsistent. We started with a win over Pakistan but they lost to New Zealand in their next game. The win over West Indies was emphatic but we slipped badly against Australia and England. Despite having eight players in this squad from the previous season, the players haven't been able to put up a consistent performance which is a tad disheartening. The girls will have their tasks cut out in the must-win game against South Africa for a loss against the Proteas will end their campaign in the world cup.

MK: Shafali Verma's form has been under the scanner. The youngster hasn't been able to perform well in the tournament. What according to you has been a reason for that?

AC: First of all we need to understand whether the team management really banks heavily on Shafali Verma. If that was the case then why was she dropped from the playing eleven after just one bad game. Yes, there must be some nerves but the team management didn't give her the confidence by not giving her a long rope.

And secondly, it's not just Shafali's form that is has been a concern, the entire top-order's performance has been patchy. I believe, individually we Indians have always been doing good but the collective performance has been lacking from the batters. The middle-order has done reasonably well in the games that we have won but the top-order's contribution hasn't been up to the mark.

MK: Your take on Mithali Raj's batting in the tournament?

AC: Yes, the batting has been pretty ordinary. We are playing with 8 batters still the team is not able to cross the finish line. Mithali has been an outstanding player all through her career. There's nothing one can say that she's doing right or wrong but at the end of the day, it's about the team winning or losing. Mithali has been doing her bit the rest of the players also need to put their hands up and contribute.

MK: What is your take on the Women's IPL especially when Pakistan and West Indies are announcing the women's version of their domestic t20 leagues?

AC: It is always a right time to inaugurate and start something new, there's never a wrong time because you tend to improve as you go along. As far as exposure is concerned, it will always be good for the players as they'll get to play more games and improve. I have been a firm believer that the time is right for a Women's IPL but we need to nurture our young talents. Over the years, our talent has increased but the pool has depleted. IPL or an international cricket league is one of the ways to increase the pool of the players so we can reap the benefits out of it. So yes, we can replicate the success of men's IPL to the women's team as well.

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Story first published: Saturday, March 26, 2022, 19:53 [IST]
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