India’s vice captain Smriti Mandhana held the 10-wicket series leveling 1-1 victory over South Africa as crucial for her team ahead of the World Cup in October.

She said this following India’s resounding 10-wicket win over South Africa in the third women’s T20I in Chennai.

“It’s a really good confidence going into the World cup, next two months is going to be really crucial for all of us,” she said this at the post match press conference.

Mandhana’s unbeaten 54, coupled with Shafali Verma’s aggressive 27, powered India to a comfortable chase of 84 runs in just 10.5 overs, leveling the series 1-1.

Reflecting on the team’s bowling performance, particularly praising Pooja Vastrakar, Mandhana remarked, “The way she bowled, especially in the first two matches, I think the pitch was really flat. For her to come back with those sorts of figures was really amazing.” Pooja Vastrakar’s 4 for 13 and Radha Yadav’s 3 for 6 restricted South Africa to 84 all out.

Commenting on the team’s batting approach, Mandhana stressed the importance of controlled aggression, emphasizing adaptability to match conditions. “I believe in controlled aggression, respecting the conditions and playing smartly,” she said. “Today, we maintained nearly 100 strike rate while respecting the pitch conditions. It’s about being smart and choosing the right moments to attack.”

Looking forward to the World Cup, Mandhana expressed confidence in the team’s ability to perform well, especially in the challenging conditions expected in Bangladesh. She highlighted the team’s focus on maintaining their current form and continuing to improve their game strategy.

Further, Mandhana acknowledged the team’s overall performance, stating, “I’m proud of how everyone contributed today and throughout the series. It’s a great team effort that we aim to carry forward into the upcoming challenges.”