We’ll carry the confidence in pink-ball Test against Australia: Mithali Raj

Bristol: India skipper Mithali Raj feels the experience of playing in a one-off Test against England will give the side the confidence needed before locking horns against Australia in a pink ball Test later this year.

A sensational knock from Sneh Rana saved the one-off Test for India as England were unable to tear the lower order on the fourth and final day in Bristol on Saturday as the visitors walked away with a draw.

India are slated to lock horns against Australia in women’s day-night Test match. The historic Test match will be the first between the Australian and Indian women’s teams in 15 years, and India’s first-ever women’s day-night Test.

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“The biggest learning is that there are other players who can stand up and deliver for the team when it is required. After the first-innings collapse and the lower middle-order like Sneh Rana, Shikha Pandey, Taniya Bhatia have played a very crucial role,” said Mithali Raj in a virtual press conference.

“Even Deepti Sharma in both innings for India she stood out along with Shafali. These girls have shown even with a lack of practice with the red ball and the longer format, they stood up and performed and that’s the confidence we will carry in the pink-ball Test against Australia.

“The mental space these young girls are in after today’s performance will have a very positive impact moving into a longer format for the coming pink-ball Test,” she added.

At one stage, Indian women’s team found themselves at 199/7, but the lower-order scripted a memorable fightback and Rana led the charge and with her gritty knock, the Indian side walked away with a draw against England on Saturday.

“I think that’s a great way to start a series where you know from a situation where we were literally looking at a Test match loss, and from there we’ve come to a draw, that clearly shows that the girls are not ready to give up and they are ready to fight,” said Mithali.

“That’s something we’re trying to build in our team environment and that’s something we try and take it forward from here, so that the team grows from strength to strength, just not in one format, but each time we take the field,” she added.

England and India will return to Bristol on June 27 for the first of a three-match ODI series. 

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