Harmanpreet Kaur will lead a young Indian side at the ICC Women’s World T20 2018, for her first big global tournament at the helm.
Kaur, one of the best strikers of the ball in the women’s game, is known to be aggressive on the field. She plays her best when she’s fired up – like, for example, during her brilliant 171* at the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 semi-final against Australia.
But, as captain, she’s had to be more relaxed, she pointed out on Thursday, 8 November, on the eve of India’s World T20 opener against New Zealand.
“Earlier, I was always aggressive on the field. I have learned how I can stay calm. Because, now it's not just about how I am playing for my team, but how can I [inspire] performance from other players also," she explained.
“So, sometimes, even when things didn't work out for me, I have to think about the other players also.”
India have come into the tournament with a side whose average age is 24. The pace attack is especially raw. Part of Kaur’s job is to keep the youngsters calm as well, and urge them to stick to their plans.
“When you have a young player, you need to support them and back up whatever they're doing on the field and that's what I'm trying to do,” she said. “I think [the bowlers] are doing really well right now and that's what I'm expecting from them.
“There is no pressure on them. And [in T20s], whether they're getting success or not … I know we have to accept that as a bowling unit, sometimes the batter will attack us. But, how we come back and how we perform in the next game, that's more important.
“That’s what as a captain I told them: just stick to your plans. Because, if you are bowling according to our plans and don’t get success, that is something we (the management) have to look into, and not you.”