India face England in Women's World Cup opener

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Mithali Raj's 85 runs helped team India put up a score of 275 runs on board which the opponents failed to chase. With six fifties in consecutive innings prior to their tournament opener, the 34-year-old's form will largely dictate how India fare. Pakistan will play their first match against South Africa at Leicester tomorrow. These women are undoubtedly India's heroes today!In the recent past, I have been asked at least thrice who my favourite woman cricketer is.

The India vs England Women's World Cup match will be played on June 24, 2016.

In the bowling department, India will depend mainly on veteran speedster Jhulan Goswami, who is playing her fourth World Cup.

Mithali became the first Indian and second in women's ODI history to complete 5000 runs after England's Charlotte Edwards and this is just one statistic from her impressive records. The lack of global game time takes nothing away from the fact that England start as firm title contenders. "VVS Laxman, cricketerIt's a 'male dominated" world, what do you expect?

On the other hand, Australia have won the title six times, and as defending champions, they are overwhelming favourites.

While the seasoned Sarah Taylor has returned after an extended break from the game, England have quite a few other players such as in-form captain Heather Knight, Katherine Brunt - one of the most unsafe pacers at the moment - and Nat Sciver who can make a difference.

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England: Winfield's injury will upset England's opening combination and might have a telling impact on the kind of start they get but Knight and Taylor's return bode well for the side.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Dinesh Karthik wished Indian team.

“Do you ask the same question to a male cricketer? "It's nothing to do with women coaches (who) don't have the ability", said the skipper.

'We'll be expected to make the semi-finals and potentially the final but we have to deal with that pressure.

"I know that it's easier to be more competitive in the Twenty20 format than it is in the 50-over one, but I think this tournament will show the talent that is available out there", the former South Africa wicket-keeper added. "For me, the Quadrangular Series was fantastic - we played very convincingly and as a team we performed really well". While Punam Raut scored 86, Smriti Mandhana was the top scorer for India with 90.

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