The Australia captain was pleased with how the spinners adapted to the conditions in Galle
Australia started its title defense against India at the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 2012 in some style. It was a one-sided contest as the Indians, known to be better against spin, capitulated against the turning ball on a sluggish pitch in Galle.
"We were a little surprised at the way the pitch behaved, to be honest," said Jodie Fields, the Australian captain. "The ball was turning a lot, but there was good carry as well. Our spinners bowled in the right areas and exploited the conditions." Australia's spin twins – Lisa Sthalekar and Erin Osborne – had combined figures of four for 31 from seven overs, with Osborne, who was named player of the match, picking up three of them.
Osborne was very modest when asked about her match winning spell. "I think I was just a benificiary of some fantastic work done by the other bowlers," she said.
Meg Lanning, who opened the batting, set the platform with a solid 39. She became the first batter in Women's Twenty20 history to register five consecutive scores over 30, a feat that Fields hadn't been aware of. "We expect her to set the tone at the top of the innings,” she said. “She is fearless and extremely confident, just love watching her bat."
Australia next face Pakistan, a team that restricted a strong England batting line-up to 133. "We haven't played too much against them, but we don't want to underestimate them,” said Fields. “We haven't thought about team combinations just yet."
Mithali Raj, the Indian captain, on the other hand, blamed insipid batting for the loss. After opting to bat, India lost its way though it made 60 for two from the first ten overs. "I think the passage of play where I was run out and the few overs following that, was where we lost momentum," said Raj.
"Harman and I were batting really well, but we collapsed once again. One defeat doesn't mean the end of the road, we have to keep believing in ourselves. We can't sulk about this, surprises do happen."
All through the tour of England, it was Harmanpreet Kaur, who took the responsibility of steadying the batting line-up after a top-order wobble. Mithali, though, was noncommittal when asked if there was a case of tinkering with the batting order. "Yes, it is important to be flexible, but we'll see what best we can come up with in the remaining games,” she said. “Whatever it is, we'll have to execute well."
India don't have any time to brood over the defeat, considering its next game is against England, the former champion.