Veteran India pacer Jhulan Goswami believes that the ODI series in New Zealand next month will assist the team to plug the gaps and get accustomed to the windy conditions before the Women’s World Cup starts in that country from March 4. Goswami, 39, the leading wicket-taker in ODIs, could be featuring in her last ICC tournament. The ODI series against New Zealand will begin from February 11.
The 18-member India squad, including three reserve players, is scheduled to leave for New Zealand on January 24. India’s last series was the Australia tour in September-October. Following that, eight India players competed in the Big Bash League while some of the others played in the domestic one-day tournament and the Challenger Trophy. So, most of them are in the cricket action.
“We are getting to play New Zealand before the World Cup which is great preparation. It will help us get used to the conditions and weather,” she told PTI after being named Legends League Cricket ambassador. It is very windy there and we as cricketers need some time to adjust to the conditions. We, as bowlers, find it tough to bowl against the wind initially.
“Those five games will allow us to get familiar with the pitches and the weather. All matches are going to be important. We have a squad of 18, if we want to rotate our players before the World Cup [that can be done in the ODI series]. We have not played a lot of international cricket, of late. So we will get time to fix our errors before the big tournament.”
The World Cup, which got pushed to 2022 from 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, is expected to be the farewell event for Goswami and ODI and Test captain Mithali Raj. However, Goswami remained tight-lipped about her future.
“Well, at this moment the World Cup is priority,” she said. “We have to go and play good cricket. That is the most important thing. Last four years we have been preparing for this and unfortunately it was postponed. Now the focus is only on this. After World Cup we will see about anything else.
“Now [Covid-19] cases are rising again worldwide. We are bit scared in travelling too. When we reach New Zealand, we can’t make any excuses. We will be judged only on our performance.”
Avishkar Govardhane is a Sports Editor and enthusiast, working here at Clout News covering the latest Cricket News.