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Jemimah Rodrigues and Shikha Pandey out of NZ ODIs and WWC

Op-order batter Jemimah Rodrigues and fast bowler Shikha Pandey have been left out of India’s squads for the Women’s ODI World Cup and the ODIs in New Zealand in the lead-up to the showpiece event.

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Ekta Bisht, who was dropped from the central contracts list last March, is among the stand-by players that also includes Sabbhineni Meghana and Simran Dil Bahadur.

India play New Zealand for five ODIs between February 11 and 24, before opening their World Cup campaign against Pakistan on March 6.

India squad for New Zealand ODIs and Women’s World Cup: Mithali Raj (Captain), Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Smriti Mandhana, Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh (wicket-keeper), Sneh Rana, Jhulan Goswami, Pooja Vastrakar, Meghna Singh, Renuka Singh Thakur, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav.
Rodrigues’s lean patch extended over all the five ODIs she played since coming back from the pandemic-enforced break in women’s cricket. She managed scores of 1, 9, 0, 8 and 4 in home fixtures against South Africa and couple of away games in England.

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shikha pandey
Shikha Pandey

Jemimah made it to the squad for the subsequent tour of Australia in September but warmed the bench during the three ODIs while Shafali Verma made the opening spot her own and the 21-year-old Yastika Bhatia impressed in her two outings at one-drop (35 off 51, and 64 off 69 in India’s only win on tour).

Yastika, for whom this was a maiden call-up, found herself in the Indian top-order in the ODIs after having made an impression in the only tour game, where she scored 41 off 42 from No.4. As a left-hander, Yastika a;sp offers additional flexibility to India’s top-order that has captain Mithali at two-down.

Pandey has featured in just three 50-over fixtures since a return in 2021, accounting just two scalps. While India have overlooked the 32-year-old Pandey, they have included younger quicks in Meghana Singh and Renuka Singh – both of who made their India debuts in Australia last year. Renuka Singh has featured in one T20I and remains uncapped in the 50-over format.

Before the five ODIs against New Zealand, India also feature in a one-off T20I against New Zealand, the squad for which has also been named.

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Jemimah Rodrigues and Shikha Pandey..
Jemimah Rodrigues and Shikha Pandey..

India squad for one-off T20I: Harmanpreet Kaur (Captain), Smriti Mandhana (vice-captain), Shafali Verma, Yastika Bhatia, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh (wicket-keeper), Sneh Rana, Pooja Vastrakar, Meghna Singh, Renuka Singh Thakur, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper), Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Ekta Bisht, S. Meghna, Simran Dil Bahadur.

  • India tour of New Zealand schedule
  • Date Fixture Venue
  • Feb 9 One-off T20I Napier
  • Feb 11 1st ODI Napier
  • Feb 14 2nd ODI Nelson
  • Feb 16 3rd ODI Nelson
  • Feb 22 4th ODI Queenstown
  • Feb 24 5th ODI Queenstown

India’s Women’s World Cup schedule

  • Date Fixture Venue
    March 6 Pakistan Tauranga
    March 10 New Zealand
  • Hamilton
    March 12 West Indies
  • Hamilton
    March 16 England Tauranga
    March 19 Australia
    Auckland
    March 22 Bangladesh
    Hamilton
    March 27 South Africa
    Christchurch

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