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Harmanpreet Kaur credits physio Tracy Fernandes for Women’s World Cup show

Harmanpreet Kaur, who finished the Women’s Cricket World Cup 2017 as India’s third highest run-getter (359 runs in nine games), has credited team’s physiotherapist Tracy Fernandes as because of her, the all-rounder could last the full tournament.

cricket Updated: Jul 26, 2017 23:41 IST
Harit N Joshi
Harit N Joshi
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Harmanpreet Kaur,ICC Women's World Cup 2017,Women's Cricket World Cup
Harmanpreet Kaur hit 359 runs in nine games in the 2017 Women’s Cricket World Cup. (AP)

Harmanpreet Kaur’s World Cup journey would have come to a premature end after the second match against West Indies had it not been for team’s physiotherapist Tracy Fernandes. Despite carrying injuries, the all-rounder still managed to play all nine games of the Women’s World Cup and came out shining.

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If skipper Mithali Raj was the highest scorer for the Indian team with 409 runs, her deputy Harmanpreet was not far behind. Not only did she score 359 runs, including a scintillating and unbeaten 171 off 115 balls against Australia in the semifinals, but also took five wickets.

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Harmanpreet Kaur readily gave credit to Fernandes. “There were a couple of injuries before the final but thanks to our physio who made me play. At one point (in the tournament) it looked like I might have to return from the World Cup. I would like to give full credit to Tracy because of whom I could play the full World Cup,” said Harmanpreet.

Tracy Fernandes - Indian women cricket team’s physiotherapist. ( HT Photo )

Harmanpreet had hurt a finger on her left hand in the West Indies match. Her little and ring fingers were tightly strapped on Wednesday too. “It was quite bad at that time because it was an acute injury. She was in a lot of pain. But then we managed to fix her and get her back on the field because we needed her. She was really brave and hungry to play the matches,” Fernandes told Hindustan Times.

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After her match-winning innings against Australia, Harmanpreet Kaur did not take the field due to dehydration. Fernandes revealed that the whole team had taken the field without having their lunch in the semifinal due to scheduling issues. “Not many people are aware that because of the delays (due to rain) we did not get the food on time at the ground. The match was slated to start at 2:30 and our lunch was scheduled for 1:30. But then there were some last minute changes and in fact none of the girls had their lunch.

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“They played on empty stomachs that day with just basic fruit and water. That’s when she (Harmanpreet) started getting cramps and had dehydrated. The doctors at the ground really helped us. It’s her sheer determination and mental strength that has helped her,” said Fernandes.

It was quite a challenge for Fernandes to ensure she plays the final as her physical condition had worsened after the semifinal. “Most of the time I went with my gut feeling. At that moment, collectively we knew our roles and we knew why we had gone there… only to win the World Cup. That was the only vision we all had.

“So at one moment it was like ‘it is just one more game. Let’s push it.’ I got immense support from everyone. And she also wanted to play the final desperately. It was do-or-die for her. She would have batted on one leg too that day,” said Fernandes.

First Published: Jul 26, 2017 19:24 IST