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Harmanpreet Kaur: 'Victory sets up fitting farewell for Jhulan Goswami at Lord's'

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Published in Cricket
Wednesday, 21 September 2022 14:35

Harmanpreet, India's captain, has confirmed that Saturday's third and final fixture of India's tour will be veteran bowler Goswami's last before she retires from international cricket after a career spanning two decades.

Victory at Canterbury means India take an unassailable 2-0 lead into the final match of their tour having clinched their first series win in the format against England in England since 1999. The margin of victory on Wednesday was emphatic - by 88 runs with 34 balls to spare - and built on Harmanpreet's unbeaten 143 as she took her side to 333 for 5, their second-highest ODI total.

"When you win the first game, the second game is always important and we always try to finish that game as a winning side and today also we were looking at that only because we don't want to carry any extra pressure on ourselves going to Lord's," Harmanpreet said.

"The Lord's game is very special for us because it's Jhulan's retirement and we wanted to enjoy that game without any pressure and I'm really happy that we were able to win today and now we can just have fun in that game."

The next game will be the first time either side has played at Lord's since their thrilling 2017 World Cup final showdown, which England won by nine runs, and Harmanpreet said India were keen to reverse the result for Goswami. But, more importantly, they wanted to enjoy the occasion.

"It's very important because that will be her last game," Harmanpreet added. "It will be a very emotional moment for all of us and we definitely want to win that game.

"Moreover after winning the series now we just want to have fun because I know it's the last game for her. We will definitely look to win that game but moreover we will just go and have fun there."

Goswami, 39, was named in India's for the three ODIs in England after missing the preceding 50-over series in Sri Lanka in July. She had previously played for India during the 50-over World Cup in New Zealand in March, where she missed India's final group game against South Africa with a side strain.

All that set up a farewell tour of England on which she has so far taken one wicket from two games and where her presence, Harmanpreet said, had been invaluable as India look to build the experience of their younger seam bowlers.

"She's someone who has taught us a lot," said Harmanpreet who made her ODI debut in 2009 when Goswami was captain. "When I debuted she was a leader and I learned a lot from her and now our young bowlers, like Renuka [Singh] and Meghna Singh, they are also learning from her. They are learning how she bowls and getting that rhythm from her. She's been a great inspiration for all of us and we've learned a lot from her."

Goswami will leave the game as the highest wicket-taker in women's internationals, with 353 wickets so far across formats. She began her international career as a 19-year old in March 2002, and has played 12 Tests, 68 T20 internationals and 203 ODIs. She holds the record for the most wickets in ODIs with 253.
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