Former Indian women's head coach WV Raman has thrown his weight behind youngster Shafali Verma and backed her to ace the Test format with her attacking game. He also added that a quick start is priceless and cited the example of Prithvi Shaw from U-19 cricket as to how he would get quick runs.
No young player has generated as much interest and buzz as India's Shafali Verma in the world of women's cricket. At just 17, she has shown remarkable abilities with the bat and performed exceedingly well. The Indian opener has dominated the shortest version of the game and is the No.1 ranked batter in the format striking at an exceptional 148.31. After being overlooked from the Indian side for the home ODIs against South Africa, the teenager was picked in the side for the tour of England across formats and received her maiden ODI and Test call-ups respectively.
WV Raman, who was India's coach until their last series against South Africa and was replaced by Ramesh Powar recently, has batted for Shafali Verma's inclusion in Tests and reckons the Indian T20 opener can demoralize the opposition. Notably, she hasn't played any other format other than T20 internationals yet.
"If a batter goes on to psychologically demoralise the opposition bowlers in the first 45 minutes to one hour, I would take that any day in any format. Let's say in a four-day game or a Test match you are as it is looking to play out, if at all you happen to bat first," Raman told Sports Today, reported ESPN Cricinfo.
There was a time in Indian men's cricket when a certain Virender Sehwag was known for smashing the bowlers right from the word go in the longer format of the game. Raman reckons that there are always aggressive players who like to take the attack to the bowlers upfront.
"Sometimes there could be a bit of reluctance to bat first if you win the toss for various reasons, but if you have someone in your side who can go out…some players are like that, they don't care what the conditions are, who they are up against, they would back themselves and they'll go after the bowlers and demoralise them."
The former Indian women's coach also cited the example of Prithvi Shaw and recalled how he got quick 70s and 80s under his belt in absolutely no time during his U-19 days, which was always priceless for the side.
"Like I saw Prithvi Shaw doing in the Under-19 side in 2017. He would go there and get a 70-80 in no time. And by the time he got out and by the time you had a drinks break, you suddenly see the score close to 90 or 100. The issue is settled straightaway and imagine it provides you advantages in every respect. Not only does it make it very disconcerting for the bowlers in the opposition camp, it provides great confidence to the batters going next in your own side. What more do you need? It's priceless."
India will play a one-off Test and three ODIs and T20Is each against England which kick-starts from June 16 at Bristol with the red-ball encounter, India’s first since 2014.