Ind vs Eng women’s Test – Amol Muzumdar – Deepti Sharma is the ‘Ben Stokes of the team’


Amol Muzumdar, head coach of the India women’s team, called Deepti Sharma the “Ben Stokes of the team” after her match haul of nine wickets – to go with knocks of 67 and 20 – led India to a famous 347-run win at DY Patil Stadium on Saturday. The margin of victory was the highest in terms of runs in women’s Test history, while Deepti became the second Indian after Shubhangi Kulkarni to pick up five wickets and score a fifty in the same Test.

“You are talking about Stokesy – I jokingly call her as the Ben Stokes of the team,” Muzumdar told WV Raman, himself a former coach of the team, on the official broadcast after the win. “She is fantastic. The confidence she has shown in her batting and the confidence she has gained in these two innings – nine wickets in the Test match and a fifty!

“She is an important cog in the wheel when she comes [to bat in the] lower order, bowls crucial overs, and gets wickets.”

India posted 428 – of which 410 came on the first day – in their first innings and batted at a rate in excess of four an over. Even in the second innings, despite losing six wickets for 186, the run rate was around four and a half.

“No Test match is easy. But the efforts the girls put in before the Test match – the players who came in five-six days before, we had a nice solid group that was working at the Wankhede Stadium,” Muzumdar said. “The preparation was nice, and it resulted in a Test match win.

“We had thought about playing in a certain fashion as a team and we will continue to do that. It was not planned as a 400-run day. But we had to be positive. Glad that the team responded. And resulted in a good first day.”

India wrapped up the win before lunch on the third day, a feat Muzumdar felt will hold them in good stead ahead of the Test against Australia next week.

“Good signs for Indian cricket,” he said. “All of them who made their debut [Jemimah Rodrigues, Shubha Satheesh and Renuka Thakur] batted and bowled well. England is a top side but at the same time, these youngsters got a taste of what Test cricket is about.”


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