We are looking at the openers to give us a good start, says India batting coach SS Das

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Smriti Mandhana confident of completing the multi-format series on high

Smriti Mandhana © Getty Images

India batting coach Shiv Sunder Das has said the team management is looking for the openers to get India off to a good start in the second ODI against Australia.

Speaking in a pre-match media interaction on Thursday (September 23), Das echoed the thoughts of India skipper Mithali Raj about the openers needing to provide the team with a good start in the next encounter. "We are looking at the openers to have a good start. Talking about the middle-order, we have worked hard and have some plans. They will definitely exhibit it in tomorrow's game," he said.

Confirming the unavailability of Harmanpreet Kaur for the second ODI, Das said that the India ODI vice-captain is still not fully fit and will not take part in the match on Friday (September 24).


When asked about the run rate in the middle overs, Das said that it is a work in progress with the team management focusing on improving the running between the wickets in the middle overs. "We are looking to have a good start (in the powerplay), to start with, and obviously, in the middle overs, we are looking at five runs, and in the end (overs, we are targetting) six runs per over," he said.

With Australia pacer Darcie Brown taking four wickets in the first ODI, Das admitted to having worked with the batters in the nets to address the short-ball issue and is confident that the batters will come good in the second ODI.

On Raj's comments on Smriti Mandhana after the first ODI, the former India men's cricketer said that he had a one-on-one chat with the opener, adding, "We have worked in the nets. We are backing her ability to get runs for us. You will definitely see the difference in the next game."

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Speaking about Jemimah Rodrigues' role in the bowling department, Das said that head coach Ramesh Powar is working with Rodrigues to improve her skills with the ball so that if and when she plays, it will add to the balance of the team.

Backing the youngsters in the team, Das said that they would come good for the team sooner than later. "If you see our team, Yastika Bhatia got an opportunity, and she did bat well. This is a new challenge for them. These are good batting wickets, and I hope they will perform well tomorrow."

"We have a few young batters, and it's a good side. You have to give them some time. Once they get used to the conditions, I think they will definitely fire."