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ICC Women's T20 World Cup: India to face arch-rivals Pakistan in opener
Cape Town: With Team India's victory in the ICC Under-19 Women's T20 World Cup still fresh in the memories of fans, the senior women's squad embark on a journey which will etch their names in the history books forever and change history into 'her-story'. The Indian Women's national team head to the ICC Women's T20 World Cup in South Africa with a group of potential champions led by Harmanpreet Kaur along with the experience and ability and confidence and explosiveness of Under-19 World Cup champions Shafali Verma and Richa Gosh.
The Women in Blue will begin their campaign on Sunday live at 6.30 PM on the Star Sports Network and Disney+ Hotstar. India get their World Cup campaign underway in a match which is sure to entice cricket fans all over the world. India versus Pakistan brings about a sense of unwavering patriotism among viewers as well as provides some of the most historical moments in the game of cricket. With another chapter ready to be written in this epic clash of titans, both teams will be looking to get their campaign off to a flyer.
Bismah Maroof, captain of the Pakistan Women's national team will be looking to improve on her country's performances in major tournaments and change the fortunes of the team at the World Cup. Maroof will be looking at her compatriots Nida Dar and Ayesha Naseem, two of the most explosive cricketers in T20 cricket to help her in this conquest.
Harmanpreet Kaur will be looking to count on the strong batting line-up that the Women in Blue have but also count on the fiery Renuka Singh whose performance with the ball will be of vital importance in their campaign opener against Pakistan.
As per sources Indian vice-captain Smriti Mandhana will not be able to play in the first match against Pakistan due to a finger injury during India's warm-up game against Australia on Monday in which she was dismissed for a duck. India lost the match by 44 runs. She didn't feature in India's 52-run win in the second warm-up game against Bangladesh on Wednesday.
The ICC Women's T20 World Cup will be a tournament replete with storylines and potential newsmakers, and India versus Pakistan will be the perfect stage to showcase the dawn of women's cricket globally. India find itself facing the likes of West Indies, England and Ireland along with Pakistan in Group A of the group stages of the tournament. India will be buoyed by the recent success of their Under-19 side at the inaugural Women's Under-19 T20 World Cup and will be looking to register a rare double at the marquee tournament in South Africa.
India are placed alongside England, West Indies, Pakistan and Ireland in Group B and the two top two teams from the group will progress to the semi-finals.
India squad for ICC Women's T20 World Cup 2023: Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Richa Ghosh, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harleen Deol, Deepti Sharma, Devika Vaidya, Radha Yadav, Renuka Thakur, Anjali Sarvani, Pooja Vastrakar, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Shikha Pandey.
Reserves: Sabbhineni Meghana, Sneh Rana, Meghna Singh.(ANI)