West Indies Women have already won the series 2-0    Getty Images
West Indies Women have already won the series 2-0 Getty Images

Hosts India Women seek a face-saving victory as they play West Indies Women in the third and final Twenty20 International (T20I) of the ongoing series. The match will be played at the Dr. Gokaraju Liala Gangaaraju ACA Cricket Ground, Mulapadu. The visitors took a sweet revenge on the local favourites India as they won the T20I series 2-0 straight, after a disappointing 0-3 in the One-Day Internationals (ODIs). To look at it casually, it is a dead series but there is a lot more beyond what the numbers say. READ: India vs West Indies, 2nd Women’s T20I Match Report: Visitors win by 31 runs; pocket series

The Indian Eves must have been very confident walking into the T20I series after a clinical performance in the ODIs. But the squad was different this time. The onus of leading the side was upon a relatively lesser experienced Harmanpreet Kaur, who was captaining the side in a series for the first time after being given the command in late October.

Mithali Raj, one of the most talented cricketers ever produced on Indian soil, not only guides the team with the huge amount of experience that she has but it is also her presence in the batting that strengthens the side and this T20I series was an example of the fact. While Veda Krishnamurthy and Harmanpreet put up competitive performance in the first T20I, they failed to act under pressure.

India’s top-order batting, especially the openers, are consistently underperforming and this is not healthy for the team’s growth. Smriti Mandhana, one of team’s most experienced batters, is struggling with her form and that is evidently affecting team’s performance with the bat, bring down a lot of pressure on the middle-order batters, cramping their time for settling down and putting them under the pressure to score runs.

The bowling has also been disappointing. Without Jhulan Goswami by the side, the bowling looks out of any certain plan. The haphazard attacks and scalps fail to affect the opponent batters which result in a challenging total. Jhulan, on the other hand, has failed to pick up wickets consistently which is also another problem for the Indian side. They also missed Rajeshwari Gayakwad and her outstanding performance that she pulled off during the ODI series.

The visitors, after spending the ODIs cluelessly in front of the hosts batting and bowling, have bettered themselves to understand how the pitch works. Anisa Mohammed, a bowler who had to fire for West Indies to win matches, fired in the T20I series, especially the second match to help the side seal the deal. Deandra Dottin was as usual effective with her all-round performance while skipper Stafanie Taylor has been a star performer for the team all through, scoring runs consecutively. The only player who failed to do anything mentionable is Britney Cooper who will get another chance to up her game with the final T20I.

This is time for India to bring in a change in the scenario and put in their 100 per cent to win the only T20I at hand. They will have to prove themselves, the fact that the team is not dependent upon a handful of players but can act as a whole. On the other hand are the world champions of the format, West Indies Women, who will look to balance out the tour with a 3-0 in the T20Is

Squads:

India: Harmanpreet Kaur (c), Ekta Bisht, Jhulan Goswami, Mansi Joshi, Veda Krishnamurthy, Smriti Mandhana, Meghna Singh,Shikha Pandey, Anuja Patil, Poonam Yadav, Nuzhat Parween (wk), Preeti Bose, Mithali Raj, Deepti Sharma, Vellaswamy Vanitha

West Indies: Stafanie Taylor (c), Anisa Mohammed, Merissa Aguilleira (wk), Shemaine Campbelle, Shamilia Connell, Britney Cooper, Deandra Dottin, Afy Fletcher, Kycia Knight, Hayley Matthews, Chedean Nation, Shaquana Quintyne, Shakera Selman, Tremayne Smartt.

Time: 10:00 IST | 04:30 GMT

(Paulami Chakraborty, a singer, dancer, artist, and photographer, loves the madness of cricket and writes about the game. She can be followed on Twitter at @Polotwitts)