'It happens to every cricketer', says Amol Muzumdar on Harmanpreet’s slump in form

India head coach Amol Muzumdar has quashed concerns over captain Harmanpreet Kaur's slump in batting form,

Navi Mumbai, Jan 10 (IANS) India head coach Amol Muzumdar has quashed concerns over captain Harmanpreet Kaur’s slump in batting form, saying it happens to every cricketer and expressed confidence in her coming back into scoring ways in near future.

Harmanpreet began with making 26 off 21 balls in the T20I series opener against England, before recording two single-digit scores. She then scored 49 and 44 not out in the one-off Test against England, before a slump in form saw her record six single-digit scores in the all-format series against Australia, which ended in a seven-wicket defeat for India in the decider.

“I wouldn’t say (Harmanpreet is out of form) across formats. In Test matches, she got a 49 and then 44 not out (against England). In the T20Is, it happens to every cricketer. She’s been a great player for India. I’m sure you’ll see some bright performances (from her) in the near future,” said Muzumdar in the post-match press conference.

Tuesday’s game at the DY Patil Stadium also marked the end of India’s power-packed international home season, where they won Tests over England and Australia, while being unable to land a series victory in white-ball matches.

Reflecting over the happenings in the season, Muzumdar has identified fitness, fielding and DRS decision making as aspects to improve upon for future challenges, one of which is Women’s T20 World Cup happening in Bangladesh later in the year.

“In white-ball cricket, we really need to focus on our fielding and our fitness. And hopefully in the following months, I will get a chance to work on it. Those are some areas we have identified as a group to raise the bar. In areas to look into, let’s rephrase that to fielding, fitness and DRS.”

“We need to get used to it, get better at it. With the games forward, even if they get used to taking it in the WPL, we might have a better understanding. I said before the series that it could be a gamechanger and I still maintain that. We need to work on it.”

Despite India missing out on a chance to win the T20I series over Australia, Muzumdar stated that the Indian dressing room is a happy space and thinks the team should be proud of the way they played in the home season.

“Credit to the girls, it’s been a gruelling season. We played England and Australia back to back, and in different formats. Not many injuries, only Shubha Satheesh happened and that too on the day of the game and it was a finger injury, so I am really happy with the work that’s been put in throughout the season”

“We monitored everyone, every alternate day we kept a thorough check on all the players, what was happening, including with the substitutes who were not playing. We were keeping a thorough eye on the workloads.

“Irrespective of the result, we should be proud the way we played all the games. Apart from the third ODI, all the other games have been close, so they should be proud of what they have done.

“The biggest positive is the girls have responded nicely in all the formats, whether it was Test cricket – we played after nine years in India. Not many had played red-ball cricket till then. In white-ball cricket we really need to focus on our fielding and our fitness.

“At the moment it is a happy dressing room. I know we have not gotten the results we would have wanted this series, but they are in a happy space in the dressing room. That is how it should be and that is how I intend it to be till the World Cup,” he concluded.

–IANS

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