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Women's T20 WC: India opt to bowl against England, Shikha Pandey replaces Devika
Gqeberha: India captain Harmanpreet Kaur decided to bowl against England in a crucial Group B game at St George's Park, Gqeberha on Saturday.
India made one change by bringing in experienced pacer Shikha Pandey in place of Devika Vaidya while the English team is unchanged from their last game against Ireland. Stakes will be high when the two teams walk onto the field as the winner will more or less finish on top of Group B, helping the side avoid five-time champions Australia in the semi-finals.
The two teams last featured in a game that garnered controversy for spinner Deepti Sharma running out Charlotte Dean at the non-striker's end to help India whitewash the ODI series.
This will further fuel the rivalry between the two sides who are considered to be the contenders for the T20 World Cup along with Australia.
"We are going to bowl because of the weather and the conditions. Chasing will be a better option today. We have one change - Shikha comes in for Devika. The bowling has been a concern for us as we have given loose balls in the last two games and have to do better in that department. It is an important game and we want to keep doing what we have done till now," Harmanpreet Kaur said after winning the toss.
"No, no problem (on losing the toss). I was also going to bowl first with a bit of rain around. The pitch is a little bit tacky. We are unchanged. We could be a little bit sharp in the field, give a bit more energy to the bowlers and the seamers set high standards. Every time we talk about going hard, it is about going hard for those conditions," Heather Knight said during the toss.
India Women (Playing XI): Shafali Verma, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur(c), Richa Ghosh(w), Shikha Pandey, Deepti Sharma, Pooja Vastrakar, Radha Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Renuka Thakur Singh
England Women (Playing XI): Sophia Dunkley, Danielle Wyatt, Alice Capsey, Nat Sciver Brunt, Heather Knight(c), Amy Jones(w), Katherine Sciver Brunt, Sophie Ecclestone, Charlotte Dean, Sarah Glenn and Lauren Bell. (ANI)