Reports: Asia Cup defeat triggers differences in the India women's team

Reports: Asia Cup defeat triggers differences in the India women’s team

The Indian team lost the Asia Cup final to Bangladesh.

England v India Women Harmanpreet Kaur News
India women’s team. (Photo by Harry Trump-IDI/IDI via Getty Images)

The India women’s team was carrying the momentum since the World Cup 2017. However, they surprisingly lost the Asia Cup final which is the first time India failed to win the tournament. Following their defeat against Bangladesh, there has been a rising friction in the team between the players and the head coach Tushar Arothe.

Arothe’s coaching and leadership were all hailed when the Indian team did remarkably well in the World Cup. Now it has been reported that the senior players in the team are not happy with the way he has been handling the training as well as individuals.

On June 27, the Indian ODI captain Mithali Raj and T20I captain Harmanpreet Kaur Committee of Administrators (COA) chief Vinod Rai and former women’s team captain Diana Edulji who is a member of the committee. The meeting was held in presence of team manager Trupti Bhattacharya and chief selector Hemalata Kala. Arote wasn’t invited to this top-level meeting and thus it suggests that the players and team management discussed the same matter with the COA.

The cause of discord

Earlier this month, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) held a review meeting after the Asia Cup. Team’s head coach, BCCI GM (cricket operations) Saba Karim, and acting secretary Amitabh Choudhary were the people involved.

ESPNcricinfo reported that it was all good until the tour of South Africa where the team did really well to win both the ODI and T20I series. Following that they hosted Australia and England at home and lost the tri-series. It further mentioned that the players were not happy with the way training sessions have been scheduled and weren’t changed despite being conveyed to the coaching staff.

More than anything it was with regards to the team selection. 17-year-old Jemimah Rodrigues who has been the latest sensation in Indian women’s cricket was not included in the XI for a single Asia Cup game whereas all the other members of the squad played at least one. Rodrigues didn’t quite impress the coaching staff in the training and practice games and the move to exclude her was with the consent of captain Harmanpreet and vice-captain Smriti Mandhana.

The BCCI had asked all the players and other members of the support staff to stay clear from the media. Thus we will have to wait for the board to complete their internal process, come out and clear the matter.

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