CWG 2022: Team India will enter into a new era when captain Harmanpreet Kaur will take the field for the toss against Australia in the opening match of the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on July 29. India will be playing a multi-nation tournament across formats without the presence of now retired Mithali Raj and veteran speedster Jhulan Goswami, who retired from T20Is four years ago, for the first time in 20 years. For the record, Goswami was part of India’s campaign in the 2022 Women’s World Cup in the 50-overs format.
Another history beckons in Commonwealth Games where women’s cricket and the T20I format will make their debut together in this tournament history. Cricket was last played, albeit among men, in the 1998 tournament as well. India will depend heavily on captain Kaur to lead India’s batting against the mighty Aussies, who hold both the 50-overs and T20Is World Cup currently. But India will take strength from the fact that they have beaten Australia in 2 matches in the T20I World Cups, but lost the all-important final against the Aussies in the 2020 edition.
Kaur and her girls’ tasks will be cut out as Australia is too good a team in the white-ball formats, and on a roll currently. Kaur has vice-captain Smriti Mandhana to shore up the batting order. Jemimah Rodrigues, who has taken over the role once played by Raj, is in a brilliant run of form after her participation in the Women’s Big Bash League and The Hundred. They also have the explosive opener Shefali Varma to give a quick start to the innings.
But although India has found replacements for Raj, they have struggled to replace Goswami and her rich experience. India had medium-pacers but none has yet matched up to Goswami and fall short of experience. India’s spin department is well-served but on English pitches, it won’t get a good purchase to make an impact. India is also likely to be without the services of Pooja Vastrakar due to covid and S Meghana, who is due to join the team soon.
— BCCI Women (@BCCIWomen) July 28, 2022
India is coming off a 3-0 T20I series win against Sri Lanka. They won them without the Raj-Goswami combo.
Harmanpreet Kaur and Smriti Mandhana will be the key to India’s game against Australia. Fans will look for Kaur to do an encore of her knock of 171 not out against the Aussies in the 2017 ODI World Cup.
On the other hand, Australia has been ruthless in the multi-nation tournaments, having won 5 titles out of 7 T20I World Cups played so far. They have also added 7 ODI World Cup titles in their bag. They destroyed England in the final of the 2022 ODI World Cup, with Alyssa Healy hitting a tournament-winning 170.
In the last T20I World Cup held in 2020, they bowled out India for 99 in the final to win the match by 85 runs. They have all their bases covered, with captain Meg Lanning expected to lead from the front. In fact, Australia has such great depth that star all-rounder Ellyse Perry, who could walk into any team on any day, is not a definite starter in the T20I.
Australia are coming off victorious in the Tri-nation T20I series against Ireland and Pakistan. But the tournament was affected due to rain. Still, Aussies managed to stamp their class.
Alyssa Healy loves the big stage and even bigger opponents. Considering the Aussies have lost a few matches against India in T20I World Cups, it would provide enough motivation for Healy to go all out against Kaur and her girls in the 2022 CWG opener.
First training session in Birmingham ✅
— Australian Women's Cricket Team 🏏 (@AusWomenCricket) July 27, 2022
Head To Head:
In the last 5 T20Is between the two teams, Australia has won 3, lost 1 and the fifth was a no-result.
The pitch at Edgbaston in Birmingham is likely to be balanced and it is expected to be batting friendly. The fast bowlers will get the help initially and batters will have to be careful early in the innings as well. The pacers need to take early wickets to put the batting side under pressure also.
CWG 2022 Match 1 Telecast Details:
TV: Sony Sports Network
Live Streaming: Sony Liv App
Australia: Meg Lanning (captain), Rachael Haynes (vice-captain), Darcie Brown, Nicola Carey, Ashleigh Gardner, Grace Harris, Alyssa Healy (wicketkeeper), Alana King, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt
India: Harmanpreet Kaur (captain), Smriti Mandhana (vice-captain), Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Deepti Sharma, Meghna Singh, Renuka Thakur, Jemimah Rodrigues, Radha Yadav, Harleen Deol and Sneh Rana
Dream 11 Prediction:
Alyssa Healy (vc), Ellyse Perry, Smriti Mandhana (c), Harmanpreet Kaur, Tahlia McGrath, Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Ash Gardner, Alana King, Megan Schutt, Sneh Rana
CWG 2022 Squads for Australia vs India match:
Australia: Alyssa Healy (w), Beth Mooney, Meg Lanning (c), Tahlia McGrath, Rachael Haynes, Ashleigh Gardner, Ellyse Perry, Annabel Sutherland, Jess Jonassen, Alana King, Megan Schutt, Darcie Brown, Grace Harris, Nicola Carey, Amanda Wellington
India: Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Sabbhineni Meghana, Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Jemimah Rodrigues, Yastika Bhatia (w), Deepti Sharma, Pooja Vastrakar, Renuka Singh, Radha Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Sneh Rana, Meghna Singh, Taniya Bhatia, Harleen Deol