India star hails relaxed WBBL teen captain

Prized Sydney Thunder recruit Smriti Mandhana, who serves as India's vice-captain, has been amazed by the composed leadership of 19-year-old Hannah Darlington

India vice-captain Smriti Mandhana is full of praise for the leadership of teenager Hannah Darlington, having relished a chance to learn more about Indigenous culture during her WBBL stint.

Darlington, aged 19, was named skipper of WBBL defending champions the Sydney Thunder after border closures and a newborn baby prompted the withdrawal of veteran Rachael Haynes.

Despite dropping their opening four matches, the Thunder have since posted wins over Hobart Hurricanes and Melbourne Stars, setting up a crunch clash with Brisbane Heat at Adelaide Oval on Sunday, as they look to back up last year’s title win.

Darlington was a picture of composure and positivity throughout the poor start, according to Mandhana.

"That's the key thing as a leader that you don't let the pressure or anything show on your face," Mandhana told AAP.