New Delhi: The ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 was Mithali Raj’s last appearance on the larger arena, at least that is what circulated moments after the Indian team finished runners-up at the Lord’s finale, but today the Indian skipper came forth to announce her next assignment donning the Indian jersey – the T20 World Cup in 2018 along with few other international series.
Despite not being favourites in the tournament, Mithali Raj led his side all the way to the final. Yes, they did fail to lift their maiden World Cup trophy when hosts England stunned the Women in Blue by mere five runs, but the team side defy all odds to reach Lord’s for what appeared to be their second appearance in World Cup finale.
Post their win, the team received a lavish welcome when they reached Mumbai and were even felicitated by Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI). Even the Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi congratulated the team personally during their reception at Taj Mahal hotel in New Delhi.
And amid all the felicitation spree, Team India had no fixtures lined up for them, something that has been a major concern for the Mithali Raj and her teammates. Despite all this she seems rather happy with the way things have faired up so far.
“We have access to best of facilities and can prepare better now. This World Cup was better in terms of visibility to women’s cricket,” Mithali said in an interview to ANI. The skipper had earlier mentioned prior to the World Cup that back in 2005, when Indian had last reached the Cup final, people barely knew as the team, but things were different this time. She had added that this time more people would be glued to their television set to cheer the team.
However, she did add that all of this has been possible because of India’s performance in the bigger arena. She reckoned that in a country like India, a sportsperson gets recognised only when he/she does something glorifying. “Unfortunately, sports persons not recognised in India unless they make it big. Whereas, abroad they invest at a young stage,” she added.
Speaking about her upcoming plans, Mithali said, ” Next T20 World Cup and the next two years of international series is what I am looking at now.” Well, the next T20 World Cup is scheduled to be played in West Indies, in 2018.