Reaching World T20 semis is our first target: Jhulan Goswami

Feb 16, 2018, 11:36 IST | IANS

Back in town after suffering from a heel injury that ruled her out of the T20 series against South Africa away, former India captain Jhulan Goswami

Jhulan Goswami
Jhulan Goswami

Back in town after suffering from a heel injury that ruled her out of the T20 series against South Africa away, former India captain Jhulan Goswami on Thursday said their first target would be to reach the semi-finals of the Women's World T20 which is the next big assignment.

"Every team dreams of winning the World Cup. We also want to achieve that. But first we have ensure a top-four spot, and only then take it forward from there," Jhulan told IANS moments after landing at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport. The veteran pacer, who recently became the first woman cricketer to take 200 wickets in One-Day Internationals (ODI), was greeted at the airport by Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) joint secretary Avishek Dalmiya.

"We play mostly T20Is from here on and in the South Africa series handed debuts to four youngsters. All our energy is spent now preparing for the World Cup and we really want to do well there," the 35-year-old said. Antigua & Barbuda, Guyana, and St Lucia will host the Women's World T20 from November 9 to 24 later this year. This will be the first instance of the Women's World T20 being played as a standalone event, after the previous six editions were organised alongside the men's World T20.

India have never laid their hands on the 50-over or T20 World Cup. Last year, they reached the final of the 50-over tournament, but lost to England by nine runs in a heart wrenching fashion. "We are not looking to avenge our final defeat of last year," Jhulan said. "That was a different format. This will be a fresh start for us and we are upbeat. We want to prepare in the best possible manner," she added. India won the ODI series 2-1, their first ODI series triumph in South Africa, and in the five-match T20 series took a 1-0 lead riding skipper Mithali Raj's unbeaten 54.

"We are happy with the way we performed in the One dayers and I am sure we will do well in the T20s also," said Jhulan who took five wickets in two games. On her injury, she said she will leave for rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru, much like World Cup winning Bengal U-19 pacer Ishan Porel, next week.

"I am sure of the date but sometime next week I will leave for NCA. Let's see how it goes there." India's next international assignment is against Australia, with the first of three ICC Women's Championship matches beginning on March 12. It is a busy calendar for India as they will also host Australia and England in a T20I tri-series in March, followed by three ODIs against England at home.

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