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India's Smriti Mandhana vows to grow from tough T20I captaincy debut against England

the Board President's

Smriti Mandhana
Jemimah Rodrigues
Harmanpreet Kaur
Mithali Raj
Harleen Deol
Deepti Sharma
Arundhati Reddy
Shikha Pandey
Komal Zanzad
Poonam Yadav
rankings."While Tammy Beaumont


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the Barsapara Cricket Stadium

New Zealand

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The New York Times
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India T20I captain Smriti Mandhana says while it's good to see individuals on top of the rankings, it is more important for the team to be No. 1 (2:53)Smriti Mandhana, India's stand-in T20I captain, says her initiation to leading the side with a thumping loss against England in the first match may help her perform better as a leader and batsman in the second, must-win fixture for India in the three-match series, on Thursday."It was a really tough game to go out there, and first game as a captain you are really nervous and excited," Mandhana said of India's 41-run loss against England in the series opener in Guwahati. I have to accept that I was a bit nervous."Definitely, before the second match, now that I have made my captaincy debut, I wouldn't be nervous and I will be proactive in captaincy and in batting, [I] will be able to give a good start to India."Mandhana's 8-ball 2 on Monday was part of a lacklustre performance from India's batting line-up, whose chronic infirmity in the 20-over format has worsened around relying on her and No. 3 batsman Jemimah Rodrigues for steady starts and, most of the time, squandering that.Most tellingly, the over-reliance came to the fore during India's 3-0 whitewash in New Zealand, where designated T20I captain Harmanpreet Kaur, who is out of the current series with an ankle injury, also had a lean patch as a middle-order batsman.Mandhana said the focus during an open-wickets session at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium on Tuesday and a nets session on Wednesday had been on addressing the T20I side's biggest concern: "get the batting order right and avoid collapse".On Monday, Mandhana had squarely pinned the blame for India's defeat on herself, Mithali Raj and Rodrigues, who make up India's top four, with allrounder Harleen Deol having made her T20I debut in the series opener."As a batter who is settled, our top four, we are playing for a long time now," Mandhana had said after the loss.

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