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WPL 2023: On paper, Mumbai look more stronger than Gujarat, says Anjum Chopra

Australia opener Beth Mooney is leading Gujarat, while India captain Harmanpreet Kaur will be captaining Mumbai. "I find Mumbai Indians stronger on paper and Gujarat got a jolt in Deandra Dottin being ruled out of tournament, with Australia’s Kim Garth coming in as a replacement."

"I joked around with my fellow commentator, England pacer Kate Cross, that keep your hands ready, you could get a call for as a replacement. I guess the franchise could be knowing that Dottin may not be fit. On paper, Mumbai look more stronger than Gujarat. But one side has Harmanpreet Kaur and other has Beth Mooney. It should be great fun," said Anjum, the WPL Expert for Sports18 and JioCinema, in a select virtual roundtable on Saturday.

Asked on who could be the winner of the inaugural edition of the WPL, Anjum remarked, "I did a review and I thought that RCB, MI look very balanced on paper. I am just saying it as I saw the auctions, foreign as well as domestic players. But having said that, no team looks 100% complete in covering all the bases."

"So, we need to wait to see that how the Indian domestic players come out and start performing, because foreign players we know will do ‘xyz’. But we don’t know how Indian players will do, as there are seven of them and four are international players. Which international players play and will balance out domestic players, is going to be a challenge. It’s difficult to say a winner, but its nice too as why should we predict a winner."

In the five-team tournament, only Harmanpreet and Smriti Mandhana (from RCB) are the Indian captains in the competition, while Beth, Alyssa Healy and Meg Lanning are skippers of Gujarat, UP Warriorz and Delhi Capitals. Anjum felt all teams could have done with having Indian players as captains in all teams, though she understands logic behind foreign skippers.

"It’s an Indian league being played in Indian conditions and that Indian players should be made captain of all teams, if they can be made. I felt that Deepti Sharma should be captaining UP Warriorz because she had led Velocity in the Women’s T20 Challenge last year. Australian players have lots of experience of leading teams, which is absolutely fair and that will remain as call of the teams as they will say, we need more experienced captains."

"Like, Jemimah Rodrigues can’t be captaining Delhi ahead of someone like Meg Lanning. As compared to Australia, there aren’t much leaders in the Indian team that they can stand ahead of the Australians. If there was captain of some other country, I could have been surprised."


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