Smriti Mandhana, a batter refined
Indian opener Smriti Mandhana has taken her game to a different level in recent times.
Amping up the pace
There was a time when Smriti Mandhana was criticised for her slow batting. It was not that she was the slowest in the team, but there was enough in her game for the analysts to note that she could easily bat at a higher tempo without increasing the risk a lot.
It took a couple of years, but Smriti Mandhana has now imbibed the modern way of playing, particularly in the powerplay in white ball cricket.
There is a particular strategy used by the opposition bowlers to pack the outside ring field and bowl wide outside the off stump to Smriti Mandhana as she has the tendency to drive on the up and has a good chance of getting dismissed if she doesn’t manage to keep the ball down, which happens quite often.
Moving around the crease
To offset that tactic, she has started to walk across her stumps and come inside the line of the ball to open up the leg side. She has also brought power into her game as she is now able to clear the boundary ropes.
With this, the batter has refined her game with time and was very excited to be a part of the Commonwealth Games the first time women’s cricket featured in it.
Making most of excitement
“Really excited to be part of the commonwealth games. I think it is something very new for me and our team. We’ve never experienced going out and playing a tournament where other sports are also involved. So I’m definitely looking forward to it,” Mandhana said. “We haven’t had an experience of playing in a commonwealth games, where we’ll strive to get the gold medal because we’ve always imagined us lifting the trophy and trying to put us on a podium where we lift a trophy.
“But now that we have to imagine us going on the podium and getting a medal, I think it is something new and we all are really excited. It’ll be a good experience and a really new experience for all of us, and I am sure that we’re all really going to enjoy and give our best,” she added.
She channelled her excitement very well, finishing as the highest run scorer for India in the competition.