Cricket is a funny game. You know why? There are many ifs and buts while the game is on. You cannot predict the winning team till the last ball is bowled. We have many proofs for this – teams winning the game in the last ball; and kissed dust by getting defeated in the last over.
As of now the 2017 World Cup of Women’s Cricket is in progress in England from 23 June to 24 July. This is the eleventh edition of this international event of cricket. Previously in 1973 and 1993 the same tournament was hosted by England.
The teams playing are – England; Australia; India; New Zealand; South Africa; West Indies; Sri Lanka and Pakistan. 6 Rounds of playing League Matches are over as on 11th July. The points table as at 11th July shows – England, Australia and India with 8 points each out of 5 matches; New Zealand has secured 7 points.
There are only 7 matches to go on 12th July and 15th July in League Stage. Two Semi Finals are slated for 18th July and 20th July. Final will be held at Lords, London on 23rd July.
With this background, let us analyze the chances of Indian Women’s Team. The girls playing for India are – Mithali Raj (captain and batting); Harpreet Gowr (Bat); Jhulan Goswami (Bowl); Ekta Bisht (Bowl); Smriti Mandana (Bat); Rajeshwari Gaikwad (Bowl); Mansi Joshi (Bowl); Veda Krishnamurthy (Bat); Mona Meshram (Bat); Poonam Yadav (Bowl); Punam Raut (Bat); Sushma Sharma (Wk); Shika Pande (Alrounder); Deepti Sharma (Bat) and Nuzhat Parween (Bat).
When talking of predictions, one has to take into account the previous record of the team, and venture a fairly moderate guess. But in Cricket there are many instances, where “Black Horses” bolted from the blue and won the race by a whisker.
The Indian Women’s Team ended at 7th place in a 8 Team list in the last edition of this Cup in 2013. The dismal performance of batting, bowling and fielding was the reason – as the cricket wizards commented. But can this be an indicator of their present form? The answer is an emphatic “No”.
We can quote the example of Kapil Dev’s men winning the World Cup 1983 at Lords, and made the entire world look back. When the Indian men’s team entered the fray in that World Cup tournament, they were looked down upon as “underdogs”. Nobody was ready to believe that this “also-ran” team in those days will win the Cup.
But history was made when “Kapil’s Devils” raised aloft the gleaming World Cup, grinning gleefully. This became a dramatic win over the erstwhile Champion and No.1 West Indies team. At the League Stage, India was pushed up to the brim by losing many matches and hanging on a cliff.
The turning point came when they defeated Zimbabway in the League. Kapil’s knock of 175 not out (which was a record for many years later) single-handedly brought the Indian Team into the winning round again.
Then rest was history. Beating the mighty West Indies with stalwarts was the highlight to snatch victory by 43 runs. Now our Indian Women’s Team has already won 4 matches and is assured of the Semi-Final Berth.
They have just two matches to go – vs. Australia today (12-7-17) and vs. New Zealand on 15-7-17. Will the same old story of “under dogs” toppling the cart in 1983 happen again? Let us wait and see!
Image source – indianexpress.com