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SL vs IND: ‘I Wanted To Give My Best’ – Jemimah Rodrigues After India’s Win

Team India registered a comfortable win over Sri Lanka in the first T20I on June 23 on the back of Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma and bowlers. However, Rodrigues has returned to the squad after having faced a lot of ups and downs in the last couple of years in her international career. She had to sit out during the first ODI in England last year and the T20I series after that, before missing the ODIs against Australia as well.

Despite having played exceptionally well in The Women’s Hundred and the Women’s Big Bash League, she wasn’t added to the Women’s World Cup in New Zealand earlier this year as well. Later, she did well in the Senior Women’s T20 Trophy, scoring 243 runs in six matches at an average of 60.75 and a strike rate of 167.58 while leading Mumbai to the quarter-finals. She then followed it up with stunning shows in the Women’s T20 Challenge. However, she scored 36 not out off just 27 balls on her return in Dambulla to help India put up a decent total.

“My height is the same but mental thing has changed a lot. In the last few years, from the last Sri Lanka tour, the journey hasn’t been very smooth and there have been a lot of ups and downs,” Jemimah Rodrigues said after her Player-of-the-Match performance. “I also had the opportunity in the last few months to talk with cricketers like Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant and others. They actually told that these moments define you and prepare you for something greater that’s coming. If you look at it [in a] negative way it is not going to help. But these are the moments that define you as a cricketer. I was blessed to speak to them and some of our team-mates.”

She continued: “I have become calmer in this time and have understood the value of having good relationships… my family who have been there. The last few months have helped me understand even my game better. This is the cricketer’s life – nobody’s life is smooth and what I am learning is to get better every time.”

READ MORE: SL vs IND: Jemimah Rodrigues, Bowlers Hand India Over Easy Win To Lead The Series 1-0

She came after the dismissals of set batters Shafali Verma and Harmanpreet Kaur who both were struggling on a slow pitch but she didn’t take much time to set her eyes in. 

“I am back in the Indian team after 4-5 months. I was very pumped up today and wanted to give my best. Anytime you wear the India jersey you are naturally pumped up and this is something that always works for me. I love to be aggressive. After getting the late-cut first boundary, I felt much more confident because I was a bit nervous coming back in after a long time. That boundary got me going,” Jemimah Rodrigues stated.

Meanwhile, Rodrigues, who has an average of over 75 and has a strike rate in excess of 150 in T20Is in Sri Lanka, gave the credit to the conditions in Mumbai as well. “These are very similar tracks to [the ones] back in Mumbai,” she said. “In Mumbai, you get the turning tracks, slow tracks, and I am a good sweeper of the ball because of that. So being in Mumbai has helped me tackle these conditions and adjust my game to these conditions.”

However, Team India scored 53 off the last five overs of their innings and that came on the back of a 32-run stand between Jemimah Rodrigues and Deepti Sharma, which included a 20-run final over.

“Deepti coming in and hitting those three consecutive boundaries removed all the pressure,” she said about Deepti’s 8-ball 17, “because firstly it wasn’t an easy wicket to bat especially for a new batter coming in and getting those boundaries was where the momentum changed and our bowlers got a target to bowl freely. The chuckles were about ‘Shot Deepti! Let’s go!’ whenever she hit. And [when I ended] it off with a six, Deepti started cheering for me and the roles changed, but it was fun.”



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