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Women's World Cup: Do or die for India

A cracker of a tie can be expected when India and Sri Lanka clash in a must-win, ICC Women’s World Cup match at the Brabourne Stadium today.

With all four teams in the Group ‘A’ having won a match each, the hosts will have to win today’s game if they want to qualify for the knockout stage.


India skipper Mithali Raj (left) and teammate Sulakshana Naik during a practice session recently. Pic/AFP

Though India has maintained a clean sheet against Sri Lanka, winning all their 16 matches while one was a no-result, India skipper Mithali Raj is taking no chances. “The next game is a do-or-die one for us to enter the Super Six stage. We are not going to take Sri Lanka lightly because on such wickets especially, it could be anybody’s game. They have done well against England. I am hoping that our team puts in a good effort,” said Mithali on the eve of the crucial tie.

Mithali is expecting a better bowling performance today after their 32-run loss to defending champions England on Sunday. “Our bowlers have given us a good start, getting early breakthroughs. I only hope we don’t give away too many runs in the powerplay and death overs. There is where we lost the game against England (India gave away 45 runs in the last five overs). This shouldn’t happen in the next game,” she said.

Sri Lanka skipper Shashikala Siriwardena is equally determined. “The net run-rate will be a problem for us and that is why we want to win this match,” said Siriwardena.

Sri Lanka clinched a thriller against defending champions England, but they were thoroughly outplayed by unpredictable West Indies on Sunday. Siriwardena is expecting a better fielding performance against India. “Our fielders let us down (against West Indies). I am disappointed. Eighty per cent of the singles they took should not have been conceded. I would urge the girls to look at the positives from the last match and implement them against India,” she said.

Meanwhile, at the Bandra Kurla Complex, West Indies will take on England. 

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