BENGALURU: The likes of Mithali Raj — who retired recently — and Jhulan Goswami are not there in the team but India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur on Saturday reckoned that the upcoming limited overs tour to Sri Lanka is a great opportunity to “build a team”.
“We are working hard on our team, we have great combinations. And for us, it is a good tour to start, because first-time we are going to play without our seniors and a great opportunity for all of us to build a team,” Harmanpreet said at the virtual pre-departure press conference.
“For me, it is a great opportunity where you can build a good team because Sri Lanka, I don’t think it is going to be an easy tour for us.”
Mithali Raj has retired from all forms of the game, while experienced pacer Jhulan Goswami is not travelling to the island nation.
Harmanpreet has been appointed as the ODI skipper, besides his role as T20I captain.
She stressed on giving opportunities to young players.
“In the fielding department also, we will give opportunities to young players who can bowl 10 overs and look for breakthroughs. We are trying to do little-little things, where we (have) worked in this (NCA) camp and we are having a vision, so we will look for that (in terms of implementation),” she said.
“If we talk about our bowling unit, this is the time they are getting responsibility and this tour will be an ideal platform for them to perform where they can take charge and bowl full quota.
“For us it is important whatever we are planning, we should go and deliver, that is what as a unit we are looking forward (to),” she added.
India will be playing three ODIs and as many T20Is during their tour to the Island nation, beginning on June 23.
“No one can fill Mithali’s place”
“Well, as we all know, she (Mithali) has done great for women’s cricket and I don’t think anyone can fill this place. If you talk about Mithali Di, I don’t think there is anyone who can take her place and we will always miss her in our dressing rooms and the things she has done so far,” quipped Harmanpreet.
ODIs: Would look to score over 300 runs per match
So, does Harman want the team to play any specific brand of cricket in ODIs?
“I think we did set some during the World Cup, where we were looking for 300 runs, but were able to score 280, 270. But this time, we will look to score more than 300 runs.
“Now we do have some players who are playing good cricket. I think, if we set bigger targets for us, we can look for something bigger for us and as a batting unit that is what we are going to do,” she added.
Harman stressed that the team would look to zero-in on the first combination in T20s.
“In T20, we will look to (at) our first combination and try to give them as many games as possible. In the ODIs, we have time to prepare for the next World Cup, where we will see if we can give a chance to each and every player,” she added.
As a batter, Harmanpreet will look to score as many runs as possible.
“I want to score maximum runs for my team. Batting is something that’s very important. Leading a team will be the second part because as a batter, if I can do well, it will be easy for me,” she said.