Mount Maunganui: Pleased with Indian bowlers, Mithali Raj on Tuesday said spinners have proved themselves with their match-winning spells on challenging flat wickets in New Zealand.
Spinners, who adapted to unusual conditions in the Kiwi-land, supported fast bowlers to help India take an unassailable 2-0 lead over New Zealand in the three-match ODI series.
Ekta Bisht (3,32) (2,14), Deepti Sharma (2,27) (2,51) and Poonam Yadav (3,42) (2,38) worked in tandem to run through the Kiwi batting in both the matches.
“Initially a lot of people asked me whether spinners can turn the match around for us on these wickets. The spinners have been doing well from the first match,” the Indian ODI skipper said.
Indian openers too choked out a weakened New Zealand bowling unit with relentless accuracy. Smriti Mandhana has been terrific with the bat, scoring 105 and an unbeaten 90, while Jemimah Rodrigues lightened the first ODI with her unbeaten 81 to guide India to big wins.
“Smriti has been among the runs, so has Jemimah. Overall the team looks good,” Mithali pointed out while claiming the team feels complete with everyone contributing.
“We would want to make it 3-0, and we will try and give others an opportunity also in the third game to see that we groom some of our youngsters,” she said.
In India’s delight, New Zealand skipper Amy Satterthwaite did not hide her frustration.
“Frustrated and disappointed, I guess. We can play better than we have been and that is probably the frustrating part that we have not put up the display that we can do,” Satterthwaite said.
Kiwi skipper said New Zealand need to put more runs and build healthier partnerships. “We need some big improvements to compete against a side like India. The crux of it is we need to score more runs and get more partnerships.”
“We talked about our options to spend time at the crease. People that can use their feet well, and can play the sweep well, and it is important to rotate the strike,” she said.
India and New Zealand will play their final ODI of the series on February 1 at the Seddon Park in Hamilton.