The second match of the Womens Indian Premier League titled Womens T20 Challenge would be played between Trailblazers and Velocity in Jaipur today.
With Trailblazers lead by Smriti Mandhana eyeing final place after having won its opening match, Kashmir cricket fans would be hoping to see their women cricket star Jasia Akhtar playing the playing eleven.
Jasia had missed to make it to playing eleven in first match as Trailblazers defeated Supernovas.
The Trailblazers win was set up by captain Smriti Mandhana’s excellently compiled 90, and her 119-run partnership with Harleen Deol.
Apart from Mandhana and Deol, who batted beautifully in the opener, the Trailblazers also have in their line-up the world’s number-one ranked batter in T20 cricket – Suzie Bates, and the world’s number-two ranked all-rounder Stafanie Taylor.
The one area the Trailblazers will have to address immediately is their catching; they were guilty of grassing more than a handful of catches in the opening match. The sloppiness very nearly cost them the match, and they will know they cannot afford to have another poor day in the field.
In the opening match, the Trailblazers captain Mandhana admitted that the pitch was a little slow early on and hence it took her a little while to get going. One expects Velocity captain Mithali Raj and the rest of the batters in the team would have taken note of that comment and will give themselves some time at the crease.
Apart from Mithali Raj, the other prominent players in the Velocity line-up are Veda Krishnamurthy, Sushma Verma, Danielle Wyatt and young White Ferns all-rounder Amelia Kerr.
Given the 3:30p.m start, both teams will have to be smart in their selections and their strategies. One can expect the pitch to play slow, and therefore from a batting perspective, fewer dot balls and plenty of strike rotation might be the way to go. From a bowling perspective, one can expect plenty of overs to be bowled by spinners, and the ball to be tossed up frequently, leaving it to the batters to create their own pace.