Women and Cricket in India
A woman is one of the most beautiful creations of the almighty who serves various roles in her lifetime. For instance, she is lulled as a child and as a sister, later on becoming someone’s wife and serving her most pivotal and sacred role by giving birth to a new life. Today she has scaled new heights of success charters in almost every field. As far the woman in India is concerned, her status has been subject to hulking changes over the past few millennia.
For people in India it is to their surprise that women’s interest in cricket has developed to a great extent, mostly brought about through advertisements where cricketers are projected as demigods. Mostly young women were only seen cheering for men’s cricket team which had little to do with cricket and mostly their cheering had a sexual tone for the male cricketers than any real evidence of their love and knowledge of this sport. But lately there has been a great demand for women cricket game right after the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup in England, where Indian women’s cricket team showcased their talent in the sport and emerged as a strong team even though they couldn’t win in the final match against England, but at least they made it to the final match. Jhulan Goswami is recognized as the fastest bowler in Indian women’s cricket team, she was recently appointed as the captain of the Indian Team. Jhulan and her team mates who were runner ups in the recent ICC Women Cricket World Cup, were given a warm and cheerful welcome in their country and their success and breathtaking performance was well appreciated and applauded as their performance at the recent match created waves in the country encouraging other Indian women possessing interest in this field to follow their dreams instead of following the herd. Despite losing the match in the final by nine runs, Jhulan and her team mates weren’t too disappointed and they said that being runner ups was still a big thing for the women’s game in the country. Jhulan further added that, “The way ICC conducted this world cup and promoted women’s cricket. A new path of success will be paved for women’s cricket and all will play an important role.” Other than Jhulan there were other players too who played extremely well like Mansi Joshi and Shikha Pandey who are no less than winners themselves. Batswoman Smriti Mandana said that for her playing at Lord’s was a dream come true. Another great woman batsman Harmanpreet Kaur whose tremendous and sensational innings of 171 not out against Australia took India to the final match. All these talented women cricket players of our country have made India proud and are all prepared and set to achieve greater heights in future. Their success in the recent women’s world cup won by England was witnessed by millions across the Globe and the best part was that the ICC Women’s World Cup was broadcasted on television so that every person could watch women play and make them re-think that women too can play cricket really well and that it is not a men’s sport alone anymore as ‘women’s cricket game could be as big as the men’s in a decade’.
After the world cup the ICC understands how cricket featuring in the Olympics would give the women’s game even greater profile and will open up new funding from national governments.
It is important to note that BCCI has recognized the potential of the women’s game and before the final match BCCI awarded a bonus of 50 lakh rupees to each member of the women’s cricket team which is more than three times the annual salaries previously received by the top women players and BCCI is also keen to provide further support to the women’s game.
With the impression that women playing cricket is quite new, there has been an effort from the media and BCCI to promote women’s cricket. It can be clearly stated that it is the rebirth of cricket in India. Despite all odds women’s cricket has come up. India needs a good structure to retain the talent, grassroots cricket coaching in schools and colleges must be provided and women’s cricket must be taken seriously and they should be provided all the necessary facilities so that Indian women do not lag behind in this field.
Author: Neharica Mishra
College: Amity University, Lucknow
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