R Kalpana back after three years for England ODIs

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INDIA WOMEN VS ENGLAND, 2019

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D Hemalatha is the only name missing from the squad that went to New Zealand earlier this year.

D Hemalatha is the only name missing from the squad that went to New Zealand earlier this year. © Getty

India women have named a near identical squad for the upcoming ODI series against England to the one that travelled to New Zealand earlier this year, barring the omission of spin all-rounder Dayalan Hemalatha. The 24-year-old from Tamil Nadu had incidentally earned her call-up to the national squad in the ODI series against the same opposition early last year, before going on to make her debut against Sri Lanka.

Hemalatha suffered a shoulder injury in the second T20I in Auckland on Friday and retired hurt. The omission could also be owing to her dwindling form across both the formats, after having endured an ordinary World T20 campaign (21 runs in four innings) and managing just a 32-ball 13 in the only fixture she batted in, in India’s previous ODI assignment – in New Zealand.

In place of Hemalatha, in comes back-up wicketkeeper Ravi Kalpana, who made her ODI debut in June 2015 as a 19-year-old and hasn’t played a game for India since February 2016.

The three ODIs, which will be part of the ongoing ICC Women’s Championship, will be played at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai on February 22, 25 and 28. The series will be followed by a three-match T20I series in Guwahati, the squad for which is yet to be named.

India squad: Mithali Raj (Captain), Jhulan Goswami, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Harmanpreet Kaur, Deepti Sharma, Taniya Bhatia (wicketkeeper), R Kalpana (wicketkeeper), Mona Meshram, Ekta Bisht, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Shikha Pandey, Mansi Joshi, Punam Raut.

England will also get a warm-up fixture on February 18 against Board President XI, which will be led by Smriti Mandhana. The squad also features Veda Krishnamurthy in what seems like an opportunity extended to her to win back her spot which she lost in New Zealand.

Board President XI squad: Smriti Mandhana (Captain), Veda Krishnamurthy, Devika Vaidya, S Meghana, Bharati Fulmali, Komal Zanzad, R Kalpana (wicketkeeper), Priya Punia, Harleen Deol, Reemalaxmi Ekka, Manali Dakshini, Minnu Mani, Tanuja Kanwar

© Cricbuzz

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