Momentum gained from ODI series in New Zealand has been crucial: Harmanpreet Kaur
Mount Maunganui : India vice-captain Harmanpreet Kaur feels the team’s good showing at the ICC Women’s World Cup here is due to the “momentum” gained ahead of the mega-event when the side played a limited-over series against the White Ferns.Though India lost the ODI series in New Zealand 1-4 just before the World Cup, the Mithali Raj-led side won the last game, with Harmanpreet scoring a half-century after enduring a long lean period.At the World Cup here, India have won two of the three games, with their massive win over the Stafanie Taylor-led West Indies giving them an aura of invincibility.Indian will now play England here on Wednesday, hoping to take revenge for their loss in the 2017 Women’s World Cup final at Lord’s.Harmanpreet said getting used to the New Zealand conditions was playing a crucial role in the team’s success.”I think the greatest thing was that before the World Cup we got (the) five (match) ODI series against New Zealand and one T20I. Because of that, we got that momentum and you know, getting used to this condition and… that is a reason which is helping us now to perform well,” said Harmanpreet.
Asked if she agreed with Smriti Mandhana’s assessment that India bring out their ‘A’ game when under pressure, Harmanpreet said, “Yeah, I think sometimes. I just need to back myself and that’s what I’ve been doing during this West Indies game and before that the New Zealand game… I think that’s what we need to do and you know, when I bat with Smriti and someone who’s already settled, it’s always easy for me to settle there and that’s what I enjoyed the other day (against West Indies).Harmanpreet and Mandhana scored fine centuries against the West Indies in their last game to put up an imposing 317 on the board, which was way beyond Stafanie Taylor’s side.Asked about the success of off-spinner Sneh Rana in seaming New Zealand conditions and the secret behind it, Harmanpreet said it was all about each player standing up and taking responsibility.
“Yeah, I think she’s (Rana) been great so far and she has done really well in the ODI series also. And I think for us, it’s very important. You know, whenever we are bowling we are looking for wickets and she is someone who is giving us those breakthroughs. She is someone who is taking the responsibility and bowling for the team. Whoever is bowling, we want them to take the responsibility and give us those wickets at crucial times.”I think so far she (Rana) has done really well and we are really happy the way she is bowling and the way she’s taken the responsibilities,” added Harmanpreet.Harmanpreet said that the team will continue to work on its strengths and not worry too much about England’s weaknesses in the crucial game on Wednesday.”For us, it’s very important to perform the way we did in the last game (against West Indies). We just need to continue that way rather than thinking about what their weakness is or what their positives are. Right now, we are only looking at our strengths, and the areas where we are doing well and the areas where we need to improve as a team.”