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England women
Womens World T20

Warm-up loss to India ‘a great learner’, says Mark Robinson

England Women news

With the ropes not brought in at the ICC Women’s World T20 2018, the batters have to go back to playing the old-fashioned way, feels Mark Robinson, the England coach.

England’s last warm-up fixture didn’t quite go according to plan, with India running out 11-run victors at Guyana’s Providence Stadium.

Batting first, India put up 144/6, with captain Harmanpreet Kaur taking the lead, hitting six fours and three sixes in a 32-ball 62*. England’s reply was headlined by Danielle Wyatt, the in-form opener, who hit 54 in 53 balls, but the innings ended on 133/8.

In all, 22 fours were hit and four sixes – India hit 15 and three respectively, while England couldn’t find the fence with any regularity. Wyatt’s innings, in fact, was in stark contrast to Kaur’s, with the ball going to the ropes only twice.

“A lot of effort and work has gone in (to clearing the ropes),” said Robinson. “What you want to be able to do as a team is to adapt to conditions all around the world … you’re not going to see the highest scoring games, that’s for sure.

WT20 2018: Mark Robinson reacts after warm-up loss to India

“I wish the boundaries are in, that would give the batters more of a chance, but we’re playing on maximum boundaries,” he added, before praising the groundspersons for making the ground a good one for T20 cricket.

On the match against India, specifically, Robinson was positive despite the result going against the 50-over world champions.

It shows here that if you bowl back of the length as a spinner, with leg-side back, it’s old-fashioned women’s cricket, it’s hard to clear the boundary

“Tonight was really, really good. We played West Indies in front of 4000 people, that was really good as well. South Africa was a quite a convincing win. Tonight was a great learner for us,” he said.

When the Indians bowled, their spinners held sway, keeping things quiet and picking up wickets often enough. Poonam Yadav was the most successful of them with 3/20, but all of Radha Yadav (2/21), Deepti Sharma (2/28) and D Hemalatha (1/22) were excellent as well.

“Their spinners outbowled us. They bowled into the wicket and protected the short boundary. We bowled all the length and got hit, gave the batter a chance to hit over somebody’s head, which you can’t do in these conditions,” pointed out Robinson.

“It shows here that if you bowl back of the length as a spinner, with leg-side back, it’s old-fashioned women’s cricket, it’s hard to clear the boundary.

The big disappointment for England was that Katherine Brunt, their premier all-rounder who had been carrying an injury, limped off after bowling just five deliveries. It puts a question mark over her participation in the tournament, and left Robinson with a selection quandary.

“You can’t replace Katherine because she bats and bowls. She bats in the top five and she’s one of your five bowlers. We haven’t got a like-for-like replacement. We haven’t got a genuine all-rounder who can do that role so we’re going to have to pick either a bowler or we have to pick a batter,” explained the coach.

“So we’re going to have to go in with four bowlers and your Nat (Sciver) and Heather (Knight) and if Dunks (Sophia Dunkley) is playing and Dani Wyatt to fill in, or we go five specialist bowlers and we play six batsmen and that’s your dilemma.”