Carried a Pink Ball in my kit bag for last three months, don’t know why: Mandhana

When
the
idea
struck
her,
little
did
Mandhana
know
that
her
team
would
enter
its
first-ever
day/night
Test
match
with
just
two
days
of
training
sessions
with
the
pink
ball.

The
idea
to
keep
the
coloured
ball
around
her
worked
well
for
the
stylish
player,
who
was
batting
on
a
sublime
80
when
inclement
weather
brought
an
early
end
to
the
opening
day
of
their
historic
Test,
against
a
formidable
Australian
side.

“We
just
had
two
sessions
with
pink
ball.
I
was
coming
from
the
Hundred
(in
England)
so
I
didn’t
really
get
much
time
to
play
with
pink
ball,
but
during
Hundred,
I
just
ordered
a
pink
kookaburra
ball,
just
to
keep
it
in
my
room
because
I
knew
that
there
is
going
to
be
a
Test
match,
so
that
I
can
just
look
at
the
ball
and
understand.

Day/Night
Test:
Smriti
Mandhana
scores
career-best
80*;
India
reach
132/1
as
rain
forces
early
stumps

“I
have
actually
not
batted,
I
batted
for
just
two
sessions
but
the
pink
ball
was
there
in
my
kit
bag
for
last
two
and
half,
three
months.
I
don’t
know
why
did
I
carry
it,
I
thought
I
will
have
a
session
but
I
really
didn’t
get
time
to
do
that,”
Mandhana
said
during
a
virtual
press
conference
on
Thursday
(September
30).

Mandhana
headlined
a
rain-hit
opening
day
with
a
career-best
knock
which
had
elegance
written
all
over
it
as
the
Indian
women’s
cricket
team
finished
on
132
for
1.

Speaking
further
on
her
preparation
for
the
pink
ball
Test,
she
said,
“I
don’t
think
we
had
a
lot
of
time
to
work
regarding
this,
we
are
just
trying.
People
who
are
sitting
out
really
helped,
they
kept
me
pumped
up
throughout
the
day,
they
contributed
in
making
me
focus
in
the
way
I
did
today,”
Mandhana
said.

The
Indian
star
said
her
plan
was
to
just
play
as
per
merit
and
not
over
complicate
things.

“I
wanted
that
I
just
don’t
look
at
the
scorecard,
was
just
trying
to
be
as
blank
and
simple,
play
according
to
the
ball.
I
didn’t
really
plan
anything.

“Last
two
days
I
felt
good,
felt
I
was
able
to
bat
well.
I
will
try
and
do
that
tomorrow
because
I
don’t
want
to
complicate
things.”

She
is
also
not
thinking
about
a
century,
focussing
only
on
batting
as
well
as
she
can
to
help
the
team
notch
up
a
good
first-innings
score.

“Not
thinking
about
triple
figure
at
the
moment,
the
team
needs
me
to
bat
well
and
in
the
process
If
I
get
one…
I
am
just
watching
the
ball
and
reacting.”

India vs Australia: Twitter celebrates Mithali Raj and band's first ever Pink-Ball Test with an emojiIndia
vs
Australia:
Twitter
celebrates
Mithali
Raj
and
band’s
first
ever
Pink-Ball
Test
with
an
emoji

Mandhana
is
relishing
being
part
of
a
multi-format
tour
of
a
tough
cricket-playing
nation
such
as
Australia.

“I
am
loving
this
multi
format
series,
go
and
bat
with
few
slips
and
gully
so
you
have
to
apply
yourself,
that
really
tests
you..
You
have
to
focus
..
switch
on
and
switch
off,”
she
said.

“Test
cricket
is
always
about
different
challenges
and
we
would
always
want
to
play
as
may
Tests
as
possible.”

Hosts
Australia
decided
to
put
India
in
to
bat
after
winning
the
toss
but
did
not
enjoy
a
good
start
to
the
game.

“They
bowled
slightly
short
in
the
first
15
overs
but
made
up
in
the
latter
stages.
We
are
used
to
batting
first
now
but
with
the
kind
of
wicket
it
looked
like
we
also
would
have
batted
first.
But,
looking
at
the
scoreboard
now,
we
are
happy
to
bat
first.

“The
openers
have
to
step
up
and
provide
a
good
base
whenever
this
kind
of
conditions
come
up,”
Mandhana
said.

A
strong
player
on
the
back
foot,
Mandhana
said
batting
on
matting
wickets
in
her
early
days
contributed
to
it.

“I
think
with
India
being
so
vast
we
have
different
ways
of
growing
up.
I
played
a
lot
of
cricket
on
matting
till
I
was
15,
it
bounces
a
lot
more
on
that.”

She
lavished
praise
on
her
younger
opening
partner
Shafali
Verma
(31),
with
whom
Mandhana
put
on
93
runs
for
the
first
wicket.

“In
England
we
had
150-odd
run
partnership.
We
just
try
and
back
each
other,
we
have
good
conversations.
She
was
really
batting
well
on
this
wicket.”

Mandhana
seemed
to
have
slowed
down
in
the
latter
stages
of
the
day
but
that
had
nothing
to
do
with
the
breaks
brought
on
by
lightning
and
rain.

“It
was
more
to
do
with
the
field
placements
and
not
breaks.”

Australia
skipper
Meg
Lanning
admitted
that
her
team
could
not
make
most
of
the
conditions.

“I
think
we
bowled
a
touch
too
short
and
allowed
them
to
play
a
bit
more
on
the
back
foot.
We
took
a
while
to
adjust
to
the
conditions.
We
have
got
a
good
plan
heading
into
tomorrow
and
just
got
to
execute
them,”
Lanning
said.

She
praised
Mandhana
for
showing
“excellent
temperament
while
hitting
the
bad
balls
and
defending
the
good
ones”.

“She
has
played
extremely
well
so
far,
showed
how
to
adapt
to
this
format.
But
we
feel
we
are
still
in
the
game.”

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