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Women's Cricket

Time has come to drop Harmanpreet as she can't survive on 171 scored in 2017 — Former Indian captain Edulji

Star Indian batter Harmanpreet Kaur has made only two 50 plus scores since the 2017 World Cup in England where India reached the final.

Indian star batter Harmanpreet Kaur and former captain Diana Edulji
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Indian star batter Harmanpreet Kaur and former captain Diana Edulji

By

PTI

Updated: 17 Feb 2022 8:20 AM GMT

Harmanpreet Kaur "can't survive in the team" on the 171 she scored in the 2017 World Cup and it is time to drop her starting with the third ODI against New Zealand, said former India captain Diana Edulji.

Edulji also wants to drop Shafali Verma for the next game with Smriti Mandhana expected to return after completing quarantine. In the star player's absence, S Meghana has made an impact while Shafali continues to struggle in the 50-over format since making her debut last year.

Harmanpreet has made only two 50 plus scores since the 2017 World Cup in England where India reached the final. The 32-year-old had fitness issues last year but after an impressive WBBL, she was expected to replicate that performance at the highest level.

She is yet to fire in the bilateral rubber against New Zealand with India staring at another series defeat. "If you are going with the same yardstick which was used to drop Jemimah Rodrigues, what the coach (Ramesh Powar) had mentioned, the same yardstick should be applied to Harmanpreet," Edulji told PTI.

"I am very disappointed with her. She was my favourite player but you can't survive on that one inning (171 against Australia in 2017). She is only one inning away from a big knock but the effort has to be there. Even on captaincy front, Smriti is the front runner for all formats after Mithali as Harman is not performing. I wouldn't mind dropping her for the next game. Sneh Rana is a good replacement for her," said the 66-year-old, who was a member of the Supreme Court-appointed committee that governed BCCI for 33 months.

Teen sensation Shafali averages 25 in eight games since making her debut in England last year. Two years into international cricket, the bowlers have found out the weakness in her game which is not allowing her to play freely. Edulji wants to work on her game too.

"Shafali needs a little rap on the knuckle, she needs proper grooming. She is moving towards the square leg and playing. There is no stillness in her stance. I can't understand why. When she was scoring, there wasn't this type of (trigger) movement. Bowlers have found her out and that is why she is moving away from the stumps to play her strokes. But you have to respect the bowlers at this level," said Edulji.

Indian spinners who have been the team's strength for years are also not able to provide breakthroughs in the current series. After managing to score 270, India failed to defend in the second ODI which is a big concern for Edulji.

"New Zealand batters are very good square of the wicket. Our spinners are not making them play on the front foot enough. They are very good on the back foot. Keep long on and long off, flight the ball more and make them come forward. "70 was a good score to defend and we should have defended. The fielding was sloppy too," she added.

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