Indian women ODI captain Mithali Raj was finally able to script a victory in their ongoing England tour through her unbeaten half-century. After losing the first two ODIs due to underwhelming batting displays, India scraped to a win in the third by producing a batting performance good enough. But Mithali Raj, who stayed unbeaten at 75, did not downplay Sneh Rana’s contributions with the willow backed her to play a significant role in the future.
Sneh Rana, who shone in the only Test between India and England before the ODI series with bat and ball, has done the same in the 50-over format. On Saturday, in the third ODI, Rana had figures of 7-0-31-1, dismissing Lauren Woodhill. With the willow in hand, the 24-year old made 24 off 22 balls and helped the skipper add 50 runs to play a crucial hand at a win.
Mithali Raj commented that a finisher’s slot has always been up for grabs as they need somebody who could clear the boundaries at will. Hence, the 38-year old asserted that Sneh Rana brings a lot to the side, earmarking her to have all the shots in the book. Raj realizes that all-rounder plays a crucial role in the team composition and backs Rana to be a significant part of the team in a few years.
“Definitely, yes. That’s a slot we have always looked for somebody who has the shots to clear the field, strong shots all round. And it helps to have a player there who can also bowl. So it’s good to have her in the side. She’s definitely shown that she does have the character in her to be built into a good player. In the current era, in modern cricket, allrounders play a very important role in the composition of the team. I’m sure that she has a bigger role playing for India in the coming years,” Mithali Raj said as quoted by Times Now.
I really hope she will be back among the runs: Mithali Raj on Harmanpreet Kaur
Mithali Raj addressed Harmanpreet Kaur’s poor form with the bat by saying that there are phases when batters struggle. However, the Jodhpur-born cricketer asserted they will continue to back Kaur as she has produced several match-winning knocks. Raj hopes for Harmanpreet to return to her best form with the bat and backs her to do well in the T20I leg.
“It does happen with any player. Sometimes you are just not in form. But as a team and as a unit we back players who have been match-winners. We also know that single-handedly she has won games for us with her innings. This time around she needs the support of the team to back her. It’s just a matter of one innings for a batter like her to get her rhythm and timing. I’m sure with the T20 format, a format that suits her game, I really hope she will be back among the runs,” she added.