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Won’t call Australia a big team: Smriti Mandhana ahead of Commonwealth Games



Nemesis Australia awaits India in their Commonwealth Games debut but senior batsman Smriti Mandhana is in no mood to lose sleep over it and make her rivals “feel good about it”. Days before her debut in women’s cricket’s multi-sport event, Mandhana refused to call the five-time T20 world champion a big team. The Harmanpreet Kaur-led side will start their campaign against Australia on July 29 and Mandhana said they have their own plan for each opposition.

“We have played them (Australia) in a lot of tournaments as openers.

“In a T20 tournament, any team can beat any team. I wouldn’t call Australia a big team and make them feel good about it. Definitely in our mind, Australia, Pakistan and Barbados matches are important. We will go like them. Come and try to conquer them all,” Mandhana said.

For the record, India lost to Australia in their last T20 World Cup game earlier this year.

India, however, will enter the Birmingham CWG after winning the T20I and ODI series in Sri Lanka recently, and Smriti said, “Our preparation has been really good and I hope it will take us to medals.”

“Aim for the gold, not just the stage”

Javelin thrower Neeraj Chopra’s achievement of winning a gold medal at last year’s Tokyo Olympics has given her goosebumps, and Mandhana and her teammates will try to draw inspiration from it when they compete in their first multi-sport event.

Kuala Lumpur The sport returned to the Commonwealth Games as women’s T20 cricket for the first time since 1998, with India’s star opener saying they would try to win no less than a gold medal.

During a virtual media interaction on the eve of the team, the left-handed batsman said, “We all have seen the Olympics and Commonwealth Games, when the Indian flag is high and we hear the national anthem, we know what it is like. creates emotion.” Departure for UK.

“Of course we’re aiming for gold. I don’t think we’ll just be looking for a podium finish because when the flag is high, and the national anthem is played, you have the best feeling.

“When Neeraj won the gold medal at the Tokyo Olympics, it really gave me goosebumps. We have the opportunity to be there, try and do that – certainly not for the Olympics but for the Commonwealth. So, we are all really excited ” On participating in the Commonwealth Games, he added: “It’s so new to me and the whole team, we’ve never experienced a multi-sport event.

“Definitely looking forward to it and catching up with some of the athletes in the Sports Village and chatting about their training. It will be a great experience for us.” Eight teams will compete for the top honors in 16 matches at Edgbaston and India are paired with Australia, Pakistan and Barbados.

Group B will consist of England, New Zealand, South Africa and Sri Lanka. Both the teams will make it to the semi-finals and all the medal rounds will be decided on August 7.

“We want to win every match. Not one match and then think about what will happen. We have worked out our plan for all three teams. We will try to win all three matches,” the 26-year-old said.

“We have too many match winners now”

The best thing that has happened to the Indian women’s team in recent times is the development of a lot of match winners.

“Luckily we have developed a lot of match winners in T20 cricket. So if 2-3 batsmen or bowlers click on that day, it will be our day.


“It’s a good thing that has happened over the years. Now we have a lot of match winners in our team.” He further added that the team has several wicketkeeper-batsmen with Yashtika Bhatia as the first choice and Tania Bhatia as the back-up.

“We have 2-3 guys who can keep and bat, that’s what we really wanted. I think we are in a good direction as far as getting a place in the team is concerned,” he said. growing up.”

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