Women's T20 World Cup 2020: BCCI announces India squad for the tournament

Priya Punia has been dropped while Richa Ghosh gets her maiden national call-up.

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India women’s team. (Photo Source: Twitter)

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India Women’s 15-member squad for the upcoming T20 World Cup has been announced. Harmanpreet Kaur has been named the captain of the team for the mega event while Smriti Mandhana is the vice-captain of the side. While the squad has been picked on the expected lines, the selection panel hasn’t selected Priya Punia in the line-up despite having a brilliant Women’s Challenger T20 Trophy recently.

She was the second-highest run-getter of the tournament scoring 119 runs in three matches at a strike-rate of 116.67. However, with Shafali Verma shining ever since her debut at the highest level trumped her eventually. She will be most probably opening the innings along with Mandhana at the World Cup with Harleen Deol being the third opener it seems. Verma ended the Challenger Trophy as the top run-getter with 189 runs in five outings at a strik-rate of 156.20.

Richa Ghosh – The surprise pick

Richa Ghosh who hogged the limelight with her brilliant hitting skills in the same tournament, has earned her maiden call-up to the national side directly for the World Cup. She was praised by many for her ability to take the attack to the bowlers in the middle overs. Ghosh scored 98 runs in four matches at a strike-rate in the competition while playing for India B.

However, her 36-run knock off just 26 balls in the run-chase against India C stood out. If given a chance, she will most probably bat at four and look after upping the ante in the middle overs which the Women in Blue have been lacking in the shortest format. Among others, Veda Krishnamurthy has also made it to the World Cup squad while Taniya Bhatia is the only wicketkeeper picked for the mega event.

Jemimah Rodrigues and Deepti Sharma are the other expected names in the 15-member squad. The strong pace bowling attack comprises of Arundhati Reddy, Pooja Vastrakar and Shikha Pandey. Poonam Yadav, Radha Yadav and Rajeshwari Yadav will look after the spin bowling department.

The T20 World Cup in Australia commences with the game between India and the hosts on February 21 at the Sydney Showground Stadium in Sydney. Apart from Australia, India, in group A, will face New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh in the league stage and will hope to make it all the way in the tournament this time around after being knocked out in the semi-final in the previous edition.

India Women’s squad for T20 World Cup 2020: Harmanpreet Kaur (C), Smriti Mandhana (VC), Shafali Verma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harleen Deol, Deepti Sharma, Veda Krishnamurthy, Richa Ghosh, Taniya Bhatia (WK), Poonam Yadav, Radha Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Shikha Pandey, Pooja Vastrakar, Arundhati Reddy.