India all-rounder Deepti Sharma, who oversaw her team’s eight-run win over England in the second T20I on Sunday, said she has got better than before at handling difficult match situations and that she enjoys playing under pressure.
REPORT – India levels series 1-1
England was cruising at one point during its run chase in the contest held in Hove, U.K., with opener Tammy Beaumont (59) and skipper Heather Knight (30) in the middle, but Deepti dismissed both the batters off successive deliveries in the 14th over to bring India back into the game.
“I like playing in pressure situations, whether it is in any position in the team – batting, bowling, or fielding. As an all-rounder, I just want to contribute to my department and take the team forward,” Deepti said during the post-match virtual press conference.
‘Like leading from the front’
“I like leading from the front, like in domestic tournaments when I play as a senior player and win matches for my team, that gives different confidence.
“When you bring that confidence here, of course, this platform is not easy but it depends on how you handle it. I now know how to read and handle situations, so I find it easy to play because I know I can handle things easily now,” she added.
WATCH – Mithali Raj: Records revisited
In the 14th over, Deepti first trapped Beaumont in front of the wicket, before running out Knight to leave England to score 43 off the last 36 balls.
“It was a crucial over and crucial wicket. Earlier also we had taken a DRS but we were unlucky. Next, when I bowled, it was umpire’s call and it was hitting the stumps, it gave us a lot of confidence. We bounced back after that and then the run-out helped us to pull out the match.”
The 23-year-old from Uttar Pradesh also contributed with the bat, scoring 24 off 27 balls as India posted 148 for four. Star opener Shafali Verma (48) and skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (31) were the other contributors.
“When I was batting, I was looking forward to building a partnership and also score six to seven runs per over. That was the mindset but we couldn’t score as much as we wanted,” she said.
“We had got a good start, we thought we can score 160 but the 140 total wasn’t bad because we knew as a bowling unit, we bowl in partnership and we were supporting each other and we could defend the total.”
Deepti said the conditions were slightly difficult for batting at the County Ground. “Actually wicket was holding up a bit. In the last match, the ball was coming onto the bat but today it was holding [up], it was slightly slow off the pitch, so it was a little difficult [to bat].”
India will play England in the third and final T20I on Wednesday, a contest that will also bring an end to its tour of the U.K.