East London (South Africa) : India’s off-spin all-rounder Deepti Sharma revealed that working on her bowling in specific sessions before arriving in South Africa is giving her results, as seen from a Player of the Series award in the recent women’s T20I tri-series.
In the women’s T20I tri-series, Deepti picked nine wickets, averaging 9.89, apart from making 49 runs to take the Player of the Series award. She had earlier picked 13 wickets at a remarkable average of 7.69 in India’s victorious campaign at the Women’s T20 Asia Cup last year.
“I had worked with a single wicket with different balls like with heavy ball and light ball. It was a turning wicket, so I got a lot of help. I bowled to my strength. Like in the Power-play, I go for breakthroughs and it helped the team.
Whatever sessions that I did before the World Cup has helped me in my bowling,” she said in the post-match press conference. Deepti also acknowledged that as a spinner, she got a lot of help from the slow pitches of Buffalo Park ahead of the Women’s T20 World Cup happening in South Africa from February 10-26.
“We have played in South African wickets previously; spinners get turn here. All these matches that we played in the Tri-series, we got a lot of help from the wicket,” she said.
“Harry di (captain Harmanpreet Kaur) also told me that I should just pick my spot and keep bowling according to the situation and I think we produced a good bowling effort and bowled according to the plan, and due to that bowlers got help too.”
Though India lost the tri-series final to South Africa, Deepti, who has taken 96 wickets from 87 T20Is so far in her career, insisted the visitors’ did get a lot of positives from the tournament.
“There are lots of positives from the series, we did well as a bowling and batting unit. We have to just carry on these things to the World Cup as well. Whether we play England or any other team, we have to just focus on the things we did well here and continue doing that over there as well.”
“Obviously South Africa have home conditions. But as a team, we have to carry forward what we have done right in the tri-series and not think about the opposition but our own team, what we can do better.”
India will open their Group B campaign in the Women’s T20 World Cup against arch-rivals Pakistan on February 12 at Newlands Cricket Ground in Cape Town. Apart from Pakistan, they will also face 2009 champions England and 2016 winners West Indies and Ireland in the group stage of the competition.