Who is the Queen of Indian Cricket?
For a long time, the Indian cricket world has been majorly led by the men’s victories in this field. But some Indian women cricketers have also brought pride to the country with their various gaming streaks.
Mithali Raj was one such leading cricketer who excelled at the game, easily earning the title of the Queen of Indian cricket.
In this article, we will learn about this Cricket Queen and her victories that have brightened and paved the way for the next generation of Indianwomen cricketers, along with the ashes betting platforms where you can find odds on Cricket Tournaments.
How did it start?
Mithali Raj was born in Jodhpur, Rajasthan and grew up in Andhra Pradesh. From the age of ten, she took to playing cricket, which soon turned into a passion.
She started her domestic cricket career in 1996, batting for various teams, including Andhra, Air India, and Railways. She has also participated in the Women’s T20 Challenge teams Supernovas and Velocity.
Mithali has admitted to having faced hard times during her early days in cricket. From no proper match schedules to poor facilities, massive gaps between the series, and absence of expenses, the women’s cricket team has gone through it all.
But things changed when the BCCI took charge of Indian women’s cricket. It brought a professional approach to the team and helped them progress immensely.
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Mithali’s International Career
Mithali had her international debut in 1999 at the age of 17. Being the youngest player on the team, she is remembered to be quiet and shy initially. However, her talent and performance on the field spoke volumes.
In an interview, Chanderkanta Kaul, the then-captain of the Indian women’s cricket team, compared Mithali to Rahul Dravid and said that no one could get her out. This was visible through her 1999 ODI debut against Ireland, where she scored unbeaten 114 runs.
Mithali has covered all three formats in her illustrious cricket career: Test matches, ODI and T20.
Her Test debut was scheduled at Lucknow in 2001-02 against South Africa. Just six months after her debut, she scored an impressive 214 runs breaking the highest individual world record held by the Australian cricketer Karen Rolton.
Further, in 2005, Mithali became the captain of the Indian women’s cricket team.
Various Streaks of Mithali Raj
The lady has added several streaks making her cricket career an impressive one.
She became the youngest player to score a century at the beginning of her women’s ODI debut. This was at just 16 years when she garnered 114 runs against Ireland.
Mithali Raj has achieved 10,868 runs in 333 international matches in her career. She holds the record for most runs in women’s international cricket.
When she completed 10,000 runs, she received a congratulatory Tweet from the God of Cricket, Sachin Tendulkar.
She also has an amazing 7805 runs scored throughout 232 ODIs. This streak is with respect to the women’s 50-over format. She also has 64 fifties in ODIs, the highest in women’s cricket history.
Further, during women’s Test cricket against England in 2002, Mithali scored a double century. She achieved this feat at 19, becoming the youngest player to score a double century in women’s Test cricket.
Mithali has participated in six ICC Women’s Cricket World Cups in 2000, 2005, 2009, 2013, 2017 and 2022. She is the only female cricketer to have played in six World Cups.
Mithali holds the longest ODI career record, playing for 22 years and 274 days.
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Awards and Other Accolades
Due to her exceptional performance in various formats of cricket, Mithali is referred to as the “Lady Tendulkar of Indian Women’s Cricket”.
In 2003, she was conferred with the Arjuna Award, the second-highest sporting honour in India. She also received India’s fourth-highest civilian award, Padma Shree, in 2015. She won this award by beating other top names on the list, including Virat Kohli.
She was listed among the BBC 100 Women in 2017. She was also named Vogue Sportsperson of the Year the same year at Vogue’s 10th Anniversary.
Further, in 2021, she was conferred with India’s highest sporting honour, Major Dhyan Chand Khel Ratna Award.
In June 2022, Mithali retired from all forms of international cricket. However, she has left behind an amazing legacy for future generations to inspire.
She continues as a player coach providing batting consultancy to the Indian women’s national cricket team.
Shabaash Mithu was a Hindi-language biopic based on the life of Mithali Raj and her journey in the cricket world.