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News

'Can't survive' on the basis of her 171* - Edulji wants India to look beyond Harmanpreet

Former India captain wants Mandhana to be the next ODI captain, suggests "a little rap on the knuckle" for Shafali Verma

PTI
17-Feb-2022
A frustrated Harmanpreet Kaur walks off, Australia vs India, 2nd Women's T20I, Metricon Stadium, October 9, 2021

Harmanpreet Kaur has hit just two half-centuries in ODIs since the 2017 World Cup  •  Getty Images

Diana Edulji feels Harmanpreet Kaur "can't survive in the [Indian] team" on the memories of the 171 not out in 115 balls she scored in the 2017 ODI World Cup semi-final against Australia, and it's time to look beyond her, starting with the third ODI against New Zealand on Friday.
"If you are going with the same yardstick which was used to drop Jemimah Rodrigues, what the coach (Ramesh Powar) had mentioned, the same yardstick should be applied to Harmanpreet," Edulji, a former India captain and a member of the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators that oversaw the running of the BCCI for 33 months up to October 2019, said. "I am very disappointed with her. She was my favourite player but you can't survive on that one innings. She is only one innings away from a big knock but the effort has to be there. I will be the happiest if she proves me wrong. I just want the team to win the [ODI] World Cup [starting in New Zealand next month].
"Even on captaincy front, Smriti [Mandhana] is the frontrunner for all formats after Mithali [Raj] as Harman is not performing. I wouldn't mind dropping her for the next game. Sneh Rana is a good replacement for her."
Since that iconic innings against Australia, Harmanpreet has scored 614 runs in 32 ODIs, at an average of 27.90, with just three half-centuries, one of them in the final of that World Cup against England. Overall, in 109 matches, she has 2588 runs at an average of 34.05. She hasn't passed 30 in her last five innings, including the two ODIs in New Zealand this past week.
Her form for Melbourne Renegades in the 2021-22 WBBL was, however, excellent as she scored 406 runs from 12 innings, and also picked up 15 wickets to be named the Player of the Tournament.
Edulji also suggested dropping Shafali Verma for the next game, with Mandhana expected to return after completing quarantine. In Mandhana's absence, S Meghana has made an impact, with an innings of 49 in the second game, but Verma has continued her struggles in the format since making her debut last year.
"Shafali needs a little rap on the knuckle, she needs proper grooming," Edulji said. "She is moving towards the square leg and playing. There is no stillness in her stance. I can't understand why.
"When she was scoring, there wasn't this type of (trigger) movement. Bowlers have found her out and that is why she is moving away from the stumps to play her strokes. But you have to respect the bowlers at this level."