Live Score, England Women vs India Women, Only Test Day 1 at Bristol: Mithali Raj and Co set for big challenge in long-format return
Live Score updates England Women vs India Women Test Day 1: Hello and welcome to our LIVE coverage of the one-off Test between England women and their Indian counterparts in Bristol’s County Ground. India women are playing a Test for the first time in almost seven years, having last played against South Africa in November 2014. Will Mithali Raj and Co come victorious in four days? Stay tuned as we build up towards the game.
Preview: Seven years —that is how long the India women’s cricket team, led by the experienced Mithali Raj have waited for to play another Test match. They face Heather Knight’s England in Bristol in a one-off four-day Test starting on Wednesday.
The last time the India women played a Test was back in 2014, when Thirush Kamini (192) and Punam Raut (130) scored centuries along with some all-round bowling effort, especially from Harmanpreet Kaur and Rajeshwari Gayakwad led them to an innings victory over South Africa in November that year. That was India’s third win on the trot that time, which included two wins over England (one in August 2014 and another in September 2006 before that).
Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami and Harmanpreet Kaur are few of those cricketers who played that Test against England in 2014, but this time with the likes of youngsters Shafali Verma and Pooja Vastrakar, it will be a different ball game altogether. Anyhow, this Indian team will look up to seniors Mithali Raj and Jhulan Goswami for inspiration.
The major concern for the Indian team will be if Jhulan Goswami and Shikha Pandey would be able to bowl long spells as they have not done so for a prolonged period.
In terms of batting, the talented Shafali Verma could be given her Test cap and will likely open with Smriti Mandhana. Ekta Bisht or Poonam Yadav Yadav could headline the spin department for India, along with Deepti Sharma.
Meanwhile, all-rounder Nat Sciver is one of the six English players who were part of their last Test against India, which also includes Heather Knight.
The pitch for the game will be a used one, with a T20 Blast game having been played last week, but Heather Knight was far from pleased with it, saying that it was ‘not ideal’ to play the match on a used strip.
India: Mithali Raj (captain), Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Punam Raut, Priya Punia, Deepti Sharma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Shafali Verma, Sneh Rana, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Indrani Roy, Jhulan Goswami, Shikha Pandey, Pooja Vastrakar, Arundhati Reddy, Poonam Yadav, Ekta Bisht, Radha Yadav.
England: Heather Knight (captain), Emily Arlott, Tammy Beaumont, Katherine Brunt, Kate Cross, Freya Davies, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Georgia Elwiss, Tash Farrant, Sarah Glenn, Amy Jones, Nat Sciver (vice-captain), Anya Shrubsole, Mady Villiers, Fran Wilson, Lauren Winfield-Hill.
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