India have recently qualified for 2021 ICC World Cup as the ICC awards the points for the cancelled series. India ODI captain Mithali Raj shared that this will ease a lot of pressure on the players. In a recent chat with The Hindu, she shared the players got confused about how to prepare for the qualifiers. Her comments came on the present situation because of the global pandemic – coronavirus pandemic.

The global pandemic has brought the world into a standstill. Every sports event across the globe has been postponed or cancelled because of this.

“In that context, this is welcome news amidst the crisis because of COVID-19 that is threatening the world,” Mithali Raj said. “Definitely, this is good news even though we are not still sure when the conditions will improve and sporting activity will resume.”

India reached the final of 2017 World Cup final under Mithali’s captaincy. Since then, they won 10 matches and lost 8 out of the 21 matches in the Women’s Championship. India last played in an ODI series in November 2019 against West Indies. They won the series by 2-1 under her leadership. Notably, 2021 World Cup is going to be her sixth World Cup.

READ HERE: ‘For Jhulan and I, It’s Little Difficult as We Have Been Out of Action for a While’ – Mithali Raj

“With the issue of the World Cup settled, we can plan the preparation much better as there will be enough time when the situation improves, hopefully, by August this year,” said Mithali Raj. “It is important for the team to regroup first, plan about the coaching camps with the specific objective of winning the trophy.”

“Of course, a lot depends on the kind of international schedule women’s cricket can afford in the run-up to the World Cup. But, by all means, with India qualifying for the tournament, the focus can shift to planning for the event in order to realise the big dream of winning the World Cup,” she further added.

However, she hopes the situation will improve soon so that they can go to the stadiums and start their training.

“For now, the focus cannot be on competitions but on resuming training sessions,” she concluded.

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