With a chance of a million Euros waiting upon them, well I say India has made quite a mark throughout the year in the field of sports all around the world, but being a bit biased with very valid arguments I’ll go on to say that this year Indian women have done more than what anybody could have expected of them, they have made history when no one expected even a bit of a silver lining!
Just like that they have the chance to alter the course of cricket history when they face hosts England in the Women’s World Cup final at Lord’s on Sunday. Since long after the tournament’s inception in 1973, it’s been dominated by England and Australia, with New Zealand, in 2000, the only other country to have won the event. But this time the finale looks upon us with a different set of player, though we still have the dominant England we also have the silver lining of all clouds, India against them all set to play their field. It will be quite an interesting match what with them already beating England by 35 runs in the tournament opener in Derby on June 24.
Though as the Indian women’s team captain Mithali Raj promises, “It isn’t going to be easy for England,” after her side’s stunning semi-final win over six-times champions Australia in Derby on Thursday, it definitely changes the wind quite a bit!
Not just the captain of the team but also the beautiful played out 36 run victory over Australia built on Harmanpreet Kaur’s stunning 171 not out as well as her stance and very much fiercely competitive streak makes it impossible for anyone’s eye to ignore the fact that there’s nothing a woman cant do, there is nothing impossible for her and that the society for once can stop looking at her as someone demure in the sports field and this realization has broken stereotypes and paved way for many development in the women’s sports arena hopefully. Just like the winds had changed during the World Cup finals of 1983 mens, that resulted in a lot of development for the nation after India’s win, can conclude that this times women league’s victory will define the stance of the cricket team in India.
With its equally far-reaching consequences in mind, Raj acknowledged, “It’s an opportunity for the Indian team to make it big in India,” Raj, appearing in her second World Cup final 12 years after her first, told ESPNCricinfo, “Everybody will be glued to the television on Sunday,” she added while recalling how India’s 98-run defeat by Australia in the 2005 final at Centurion, South Africa, was not even broadcast. If we can pull it off, there will be nothing like it. It will help the future of women’s cricket.”
Not just that but the fact that along with this, it will be a personally very big achievement for the two 34-yr-olds, Raj as well as Indian pace bowler Jhulan Goswami, the leading run-scorer and wicket-taker in women’s one-day international history respectively, this has the potential to be their last chance of a win in the World Cup.
A very pleasing and proud fact of this time for the Indian team is the fact that they have not been solely dependent on Raj and Goswami, who nevertheless produced the delivery of the tournament, yet we can definitely see the likes of Smriti Mandhana, Punam Raut as well as Sharma to have stepped up their game when most needed.
A win in the bag or not, this is definitely a very proud moment for all Indians and women in particular, as we embark on a positive ride up to peoving ourselves and our worth in our society. It’s a step towards a big dream and its achievement and we are all very grateful to the team for this big moment. All the best to the team to making it big and keeping up the great work!