India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur on Thursday said quick fixes in the fielding and fitness department were not possible but her team will plug those gaps eventually with the help of a recently appointed full-time support staff. The team has struggled with fielding and fitness issues for a long time. As India Women prepare to take on Australia in a three-match T20 series starting here on Friday, the focus is on how Harmanpreet ends her poor run with the bat following six single-digit scores in nine outings.
Also, India dropped a total of eight catches over the last two ODIs – seven in the second match itself – in their 0-3 loss to the mighty Aussies.
“If we talk about the team’s performance, we are playing very good cricket in patches. Fielding and fitness are something that we have been talking about for a long time. We have been working on it too,” Kaur told the media.
Amol Muzumdar, who was appointed the team’s head coach in late October, informed in his first press conference before the T20I series against England that Munish Bali (fielding) and Troy Cooley (bowling) would be his support staff members.
“The best part is that now we have a regular support staff. In between, we had many coaches who had their own views on fielding and fitness,” Kaur added.
“We have Munish sir now, he has to be given time. He is a very experienced coach and has worked with many players. He is trying his best but it is difficult to get results in one month,” Kaur said.
“In patches, we are sometimes in the plus or sometimes in the minus, when our charts come out,” she said about the processes followed by the coaching staff. “A lot of errors are happening. But it is only when the team fields like a unit, it looks good,” she added.
Kaur said India must focus on reducing errors on the field in order to improve overall performance.
“It is a good thing that we are getting to play against a good team (Australia and England) and test ourselves against them. If we are able to cut down the errors day-by-day, the team’s performance will be better,” she said.
On her own form, Kaur said she wants to end a string of ‘weird ways of getting out’.
“I am getting good starts, but somehow I am not being able to convert them into big scores. I feel even luck plays a key role because I got out in a weird manner a couple times.
“It was not that I played bad shots or they bowled well, but those were weird ways of getting out. I am trying my level best to train hard and batting so that it does not look like I am out of form,” she said.
“This morning, I spent some extra time in the nets to gain more confidence. As a player everyone wants to score crucial runs for the team, that is my focus as well. The next three games are very important. If I can score runs, it will be good for the team,” Kaur added.
Kaur said even though the Indian team at present does not have a mental conditioning coach, Muzumdar brings in a lot of experience and helps players to deal with the challenges.
“Our head coach is quite sorted and he brings everyone together. Every player loves communicating with him as he helps them out.
“He is someone who has played a lot of cricket and he has been through a similar phase – that we are in now – in his playing days, so he understands it all,” she added.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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