Bristol: Following a 115-run thrashing by South Africa, the Indian women’s cricket team will look to bounce back against Australia in their next group stage match of the ICC Women’s World Cup (ICC WWC) here at the Bristol Country Ground on Wednesday.
After winning four matches on the trot, the Indian women on Saturday failed to put up a collective effort in the field against the Proteas, resulting in their first defeat of the tournament.
Australia too succumbed to their first loss in five matches in their previous match against England and dropped to second spot in the points table.
England, Australia and India share eight points each in the table to remain first, second and third respectively, divided by superior run-rate.
India will hope their star batswoman Smriti Mandhana fires against Australia at the top after failing to get going in her previous two outings. Mandhana scored eight runs against Sri Lanka and two against south Africa.
Skipper Mithali Raj will also look to open her arms against Australia after scoring a golden duck against South Africa.
In-form batter Deepti Sharma, who has so far scored 172 runs in the five matches will look to continue her fine run with the willow.
In the bowling department, left-arm spinner Ekta Bisht — the leading wicket-taker in the tournament so far with nine scalps — will look to put the brakes on the Australians alongside medium pacer Deepti Sharma and fellow spinner Poonam Yadav.
On the other hand, Australia skipper Meg Lanning with 252 runs alongside batters Ellyse Perry (251) and Nicole Bolton (222) will look to outclass the Indian bowling.
Australia will heavily rely on their spinning trio of Kristen Beams (9 wickets), Jess Jonassen (7) and Ashleigh Gardner (6) to help their side provide crucial wickets against a strong Indian line-up.
India: Mithali Raj (Captain), Ekta Bisht, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Jhulan Goswami, Mansi Joshi, Harmanpreet Kaur, Veda Krishnamurthy, Smriti Mandhana, Mona Meshram, Shikha Pandey, Poonam Yadav, Nuzhat Parween, Punam Raut, Deepti Sharma, Sushma Verma (WK), Smriti Mandhana.
Australia: Meg Lanning (Captain), Sarah Aley, Kristen Beams, Alex Blackwell, Nicole Bolton, Ashleigh Gardner, Rachael Haynes, Alyssa Healy (WK), Jess Jonassen, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Belinda Vakarewa, Elyse Villani, Amanda-Jade Wellington.