Ramesh Powar opens up on injury issues, outlines opportunities for youngsters ahead of the SL-W tour

Vaibhav Tripathi

Vaibhav Tripathi

Author| Jun 19, 9:16 AM

PC: Twitter/ Sri Lankan Airlines
PC: Twitter/ Sri Lankan Airlines

India Women’s head coach Ramesh Powar has stated that young players will be given opportunities to cement their places in the upcoming tour of Sri Lanka.

The Indian women's team will tour Sri Lanka to take part in the three-match T20I series and then will play the same number of ODI matches as well. 

Before leaving for the Sri Lanka tour, the head coach of the team along with the new ODI skipper Harmanpreet Kaur addressed the media in a press conference where Powar said that the absence of senior players like Jhulan Goswami, Shikha Pandey, and Sneh Rana will provide a great chance for the young players to step up and cement their place in the team.

"When you move forward in a transition period, you need to give opportunities to young players to cement their places," he said. 

"For that as a support staff, we need to go and give them support through NCA and skill coaches that they should concur in every situation. So, this is the right time for players to take their opportunity and do well going forward.”

India will be without their senior pacers, Jhulan Goswami and Shikha Pandey. On their omission from the squad, the former Indian cricketer said the BCCI and selectors will update on their fitness and availability.

"As far as Jhulan (Goswami) and Shikha (Pandey) are concerned, I think they have done a fantastic job over the years and BCCI and selectors can update on their fitness and everything. As of now, Shikha and Jhulan are not traveling with us."

The 44-year-old is hopeful that the young crop of fast bowlers picked for the Sri Lanka tour will produce results for the team.  He also hailed right arm pacer Pooja Vastrakar for her performances in the last six months.

"So whichever bowlers are there - we are carrying four fast bowlers - you will see results from them. Pooja Vastrakar has been an outstanding bowler for the last six months. Moving forward, we will try and fast-track this fast bowling attack's improvements."

Promising allrounder Sneh Rana is also not a part of the squad. Powar said she has been given a rest for the series in order to manage her workload.

"She's been rested for this series, she's in NCA. She's working on her fitness and moving forward. In the FTP we have 20-25 T20 games and some ODI series, so we want her to be fresh for those series. We are trying to manage the workload of the bowling as well as the batting unit and are trying to balance it out."

The ex-Indian spinner further said that the Sri Lanka tour will give the management an ideal platform to test a few players in order to ‘freeze’ down their playing XI for the Commonwealth games.

"At this moment, we are trying to assess where we stand as a team and where we need to get at, to beat all the teams in the ICC tournaments and in every series we play. This Sri Lanka tour will give us the opportunity to try a few players. We are trying to plan our next eight months according to the situations we have to face ahead. It is more of a planning phase right now and we will execute those plans once we go ahead in the series and tournaments.”

"To add to that, we will freeze down a combination of 11 which will take part in the Commonwealth so that we are confident walking into the tournament. And the players will be confident that they are going to play in the first game," Powar concluded.

India and Sri Lanka will play three T20Is in Dambulla on June 23, 25, and 27 followed by as many ODI games on July 1, 4, and 7.

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