"This lack of form is hurting India a lot" - Saba Karim says Harmanpreet Kaur needs to concentrate on her batting

India v Australia - Women
Harmanpreet Kaur was dismissed cheaply in the third T20I between India and Australia. [P/C: Getty]

Saba Karim has urged Harmanpreet Kaur to concentrate on her batting, highlighting that her lean run is hurting India a lot.

Harmanpreet managed only three runs off six deliveries as the Women in Blue set Australia a 148-run target in their third T20I in Navi Mumbai on Tuesday, January 9. Alyssa Healy and company romped home with seven wickets and eight deliveries to spare to complete a 2-1 win in the three-match series.

During a discussion on Sports 18, Karim pointed out that Harmanpreet's underwhelming performances are a cause for concern for India. He elaborated:

"This lack of form is hurting India a lot. Harman needs to concentrate on her primary skill, which is batting. Sometimes you start giving a lot of importance to the captaincy role and your focus moves away from your primary skill."

The former India wicketkeeper-batter added that Amol Muzumdar and the other coaches and senior players can shoulder the leadership responsibility. He said:

"You have an experienced support staff. You have Amol Muzumdar and quite a few other players who can take that responsibility. Your captaincy will be better when your batting flourishes."

Harmanpreet hasn't reached the double-digit mark in her last six international innings. She didn't score a half-century in the entire home season against England and Australia across all three formats.

"I feel it's the think-tank's decision" - Reema Malhotra on Harmanpreet Kaur holding Deepti Sharma back

Harmanpreet Kaur didn't introduce Deepti Sharma into the attack in the first seven overs of Australia's innings. [P/C: Getty]
Harmanpreet Kaur didn't introduce Deepti Sharma into the attack in the first seven overs of Australia's innings. [P/C: Getty]

Reema Malhotra was asked about her thoughts on Harmanpreet Kaur's captaincy, considering that Pooja Vastrakar and Deepti Sharma were held back in batting and bowling respectively. She replied:

"I feel it's the think-tank's decision, that which bowler should be used where based on how much experience you have in your bowling. Titas Sadhu is a young player and Shreyanka Patil does not have too much international experience."

While acknowledging that Deepti could have been given the ball slightly earlier, the former India all-rounder concurred with Saba Karim that Harmanpreet's batting is the bigger concern. She said:

"So you want to hold the experience back. However, you definitely need to give one or two early overs because if you try to take the match to the end, it will slip out of your grasp before that. I didn't see Harmanpreet Kaur lacking as much in captaincy as I saw in Harmanpreet the batter."

Malhotra opined that the bowlers did a decent job, highlighting that the target wasn't enough as the wicket was good. She added the chasing team always has an advantage at the DY Patil Stadium, and that Australia made the most of it in the last two matches.

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Edited by Sai Krishna
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