We are backing Smriti Mandhana’s ability to get runs for us: SS Das

India womens batting coach Shiv Sunder Das has backed opener Smriti Mandhana to get big runs ahead of the second ODI against Australia on Friday. Smriti was dismissed for 10 in the tour match and made just 16 in Indias nine-wicket loss to Australia on Tuesday. Her role at the top of the order becomes more important after Das confirmed that Harmanpreet Kaur wont be available for the second ODI due to thumb injury.

“I had a one-to-one chat with her (Mandhana) and in the last two sessions we have worked hard in the nets. We have addressed a few issues and, as she is a world-class player, and we are backing her ability to get runs for us. Definitely we will see the difference in tomorrow’s game,” said Das in a virtual press conference on Thursday.

Das mentioned that the Indian team has been working on some areas such as running between the wickets in the middle overs to scoring more in the first ten overs of the innings. “The first ten overs we have addressed the issue. In the middle overs, the running between the wickets is an area we are still working on. It is a work in progress. We have a few young batters in our side. It is a good side and you have to give them some time. Once they get used to the conditions, they will definitely fire.”

Das was confident of Smriti and Shafali Verma giving India a good start with the bat in the second ODI. “I had a one-to-one chat with them (players) and, in the nets, we have tried a few things. It is about how individuals react to the game. We have Shafali Verma and Smriti at the start of the innings, so basically we are looking at a good start. I am very positive as a batting coach that they will start well. If we get 60-70 runs in the first 10 overs, we can carry that momentum into the middle overs,” concluded Das.