In do-or-die match, India's resilience will be tested by strong New Zealand

Marco Green
July 16, 2017

The side to top the eight-team league will play the fourth-placed outfit in the first semi-final in Bristol on July 18 while the sides finishing second and third will feature in the second semi-final in Derby on July 20.

South Africa will meet Australia at Taunton.

"You can't just give up because you lose one game", said Raj.

Smriti Mandhana after an impressive start to the tournament has failed in her last four innings.

Meanwhile, the Indian camp will be looking up to other open Punam Raut to come good in this contest.

Indian captain Mitali Raj led from the front to steer her team to a comfortable 265 runs for the loss of seven wickets in a Women's World Cup 2017 clash on Saturday.

India overcame the poor start in the middle overs, milking 16-year-old leg-spinner Amelia Kerr for 64 runs besides skipper Suzie Bates leaking 59 from her 8 overs. There is no doubt that teams will be chasing her signature as soon as it is available.

On the bowling front, pace spearhead Jhulan Goswami has not seemed her threatening self despite the conditions offering early movement to pacers and Raj will once again relying on their spinners - Deepti Sharma, Ekta Bisht, Harmanpreet and Poonam Yadav to carry the bulk of the bowling on their shoulders. "That's the key in these tournaments, you have to take wickets, especially top-order wickets".

Fielding, which has proved to be a major problem area for India throughout the tournament, will also have to improve a lot. The final over, however, witnessed a quick fall of wickets with Mithali, Veda and Shikha Pandey (0) going one after the other as India finished at 265/7.

However, for both the team and fans, there is something more at stake than a semifinal spot; the legacy of some of India's biggest names. And Raj did this with unshakeable elan, knocking off 69 from 114 balls in a World Cup match against Australia-the fact that India lost hardly takes the sheen off the captain's achievement.

India skipper Mithali Raj has demanded improvement from her team and believes the ability to cope with the pressure of a must-win game will be the deciding factor.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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