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BCCI today announced the squad for three ODI series against South Africa that is scheduled to be played between February 5 to 10, 2018. Indian Cricket Team will play their first series after ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 and these three ODIs will be the part of the ICC Women’s Championship (2017-2020).

 

Young batting sensation Jemimah Rodrigues from Mumbai has been picked in the 16-member squad. She came into limelight after scoring a double ton (202 off 163 balls) in the U19 match against Saurashtra and became the second player to do so after Smriti Mandhana. She performed well in domestic series as well as the Challenger Trophy. There she scored 179 in three matches with two half-centuries and became the third highest run-getter. “I was in tears when Punam [Raut] di called me up to share the news earlier this morning,” the 17-year-old Rodrigues told ESPNcricinfo. “Last year, I had had low scores in the Challenger, but this season, I wanted to keep the momentum going after a good Under-19 and the Senior tournaments given how close the South Africa tour is to our domestic calendar.”, she added. “This call-up is as much an effort of mine as it is of my parents, my Mumbai Cricket Association family and all my coaches, including Tushar [Arothe, the India head coach] and Biju [George, the India fielding coach] sir.”

 

The selectors have also decided to pick a backup wicketkeeper in Taniya Bhatia who got her maiden call-up in the place of Nuzhat Parween, who was a part of Women’s World Cup squad. She recently told the media, “Both Tushar and Biju sir had been very encouraging all through about my wicketkeeping. I’ve played with Harmanpreet [Kaur] for roughly three years when she used to represent Punjab, and with and against other members of the Indian side, but to be able to share the dressing room and get a feel of the international environment will help me grow.”

 

Pooja Vastrakar, the allrounder from Madhya Pradesh also got her maiden call-up for her exceptional performance in domestic series as well as in the Challenger Trophy. She will be in place of Mansi Joshi, who was a part of Women’s World Cup squad, as she got hurt during the India A series against Bangladesh. She is currently undergoing a rehab for her knee injury that ruled her out of the Challenger Trophy as well. “I have been plagued with injury through my career over the years,” Vastrakar added “But despite the injury in the Challenger opener, I held on to my hopes of making it to the squad [for the South Africa tour] given the swing I was generating both ways in that game and also in the final. My fielding, I take pride in that, and with Smriti [Mandhana, who captained her in the India Blue squad] and other team-mates commending my efforts on the field, I knew I could be in with a chance. Glad the thumb injury didn’t come in the way this time around.”

 

The sixteen members squad will be led by Mithali Raj and Harmanpreet Kaur will continue to be her deputy. The team will play a warm-up match in Bloemfontein on February 2 before playing the first two ODIs in Kimberley. The last match of the series will be played in Potchefstroom.

 

Squad:

Mithali Raj (c), Harmanpreet Kaur (vc), Sushma Verma (wk), Ekta Bisht, Smriti Mandhana, Poonam Yadav, Punam Raut, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Jemimah Rodrigues, Jhulan Goswami, Deepti Sharma, Shikha Pandey, Mona Meshram, Pooja Vastrakar, Veda Krishnamurthy, Taniya Bhatia (wk).

 

Schedule:

South Africa Women vs India Women, 1st ODI (ICC Championship match)
Day: Feb 05, Monday.
Time: 1:30 PM. 08:00 AM GMT / 10:00 AM LOCAL
Place: Diamond Oval, Kimberley

 

South Africa Women vs India Women, 2nd ODI (ICC Championship match)
Day: Feb 07, Wednesday.
Time: 1:30 PM. 08:00 AM GMT / 10:00 AM LOCAL
Place: Diamond Oval, Kimberley

 

South Africa Women vs India Women, 3rd ODI (ICC Championship match)
Day: Feb 10, Saturday.
Time: 1:30 PM. 08:00 AM GMT / 10:00 AM LOCAL
Place: Senwes Park, Potchefstroom

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