“There is no challenge for Shafali Verma, kind of cricket she plays is unique” - Hemlata Kala on Australia series 

Shafali Verma during her Test debut against England. Pic: Getty Images
Shafali Verma during her Test debut against England. Pic: Getty Images

Former India women’s cricketer Hemlata Kala feels that Shafali Verma will play her natural game in Australia and should succeed doing so because her methods are unique.

India women are currently in Australia for a multi-format series featuring three ODIs, a one-off day-night Test and three T20Is. The series will begin with the first one-dayer on September 21.

According to Kala, Shafali Verma is unlikely to be troubled by Australia’s bowlers because of her fearless approach to batting.

Kala asserted during an interaction organized by Sony Sports:

“There is no challenge for Shafali Verma. The kind of cricket she plays is unique. If the ball is in her range, even if it is coming at the speed of 140, 110 or 70 Km/hr, she will keep playing the way that she does. I don’t really think she will be troubled much by anyone because of her approach to the game.”
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Admitting that 17-year-old Shafali Verma will have a crucial role to play in the pink-ball Test match, Kala added that the others will have to do their job as well. She explained:

“Of course, Shafali Verma will have an important role to play in the pink-ball Test match. I think she will be as successful against the pink ball as she has been against the red ball because her game is all about power-hitting. I am very confident that Shafali Verma will taste success in the match."

Kala further stated:

“At the same time, not only Shafali Verma, but every member of the team will have to play an important role for us. Everyone has a different way of playing and will have to do their job as well. Yes, Shafali scored a 90 and a 60 on her Test debut in England. She should play the same saw she plays in ODIs and T20Is. Definitely, she will be crucial in the pink-ball Test.”

India women will play their maiden pink-ball Test at Carrara Oval in Queensland from September 30.

We do not want to curtail Shafali Verma’s game: Ramesh Powar

India women’s head coach Ramesh Powar has stated that the team management will not try to curb Shafali Verma’s natural flair. He added that the team is pleased with the way she batted on her Test debut. Powar said at a virtual press conference:

"As far as Shafali is concerned, I think the way she played the Test game, we were happy. As a 17-year-old, we have to give her a little breathing space. Me, Mithali, and SS Das have had conversations with her. She knows what is expected out of her, we do not push her who is very expressive in her batting. We do not want to curtail her game, we want to give her freedom.”

Shafali Verma made a memorable Test debut in England earlier this year, scoring 96 and 63.

Edited by Samya Majumdar

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