Mithali hopes to strike it rich again in England

Mithali hopes to strike it rich again in England

Batter in happy hunting ground

Walking into bat as a promising teenager in the second and final Test at Taunton, the 19-year-old conjured a brilliant 214 to graduate into the big stage in sizzling fashion, after which there has been no looking back for the Rajasthani. Of late, however, things have not been too rosy for the Railways employee, what with the right-hander struggling for runs. “I have always done well in England,” said a confident Mithali ahead of the Indian women’s team’s departure to Old Blighty for a quadrangular series. “Whenever I go in to bat, I don’t think about the past because the statistics will come into play. I go with the confidence that I can bat well.

“It’s going to be a good tournament because we are competing against the best sides in the world and it will definitely show us where we stand. This tournament is an ideal start for the 2013 World Cup.”

The Indian team, which left for London on Friday evening, will first take part in a T20 competition from June 23-27 before playing a 50-over tournament from June 30 to July 7. The other teams in both quadrangular tournaments are favourites England, Australia and New Zealand.

“During my last visit to England, I’ve noticed that for the T20s and ODIs, they are going with more batting-friendly wickets,” said Mithali when asked if the pitches would be difficult to bat on. “It’s easier as a batswoman to adjust because there is not much moisture now. Moreover we are going there during summer and I feel the wickets will be more placid, unless it rains and the weather is overcast. I think we should do well.”

The eves, who defeated England and West Indies at home in the last 12 months, sadly have not been great travellers, which Mithali said was largely due to lack of top-class cricket. “Firstly, we don’t play too many international matches to gain experience. We hardly played any matches before the last T20 World Cup. We played just three matches and jumped into the tournament straightaway.

“Of course, we have started playing more matches now. We hosted England and the West Indies during the last year and the girls have gained a lot from it. On the contrary, England and Australia play a lot of tournaments and their average rate of scoring in T20s is 150-160. I am sure with more experience, the team will do well more often.

“There is a lot of gap between the two tournaments. Experience matters a lot at the international level and as I said earlier, if we play more tournaments in the next two years, we should do well in the World Cup,” added the former captain.

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