The challenger trophy to be played from January 3 to January 6 in Mulapadu, Andhra Pradesh will miss some big names. The selection committee headed by Hemlata kala has decided to rest Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami, Poonam Yadav, Deepti Sharma, Taniya Bhatia, Rajeshwari Gayakwad and Jemimah Rodrigues. On the other hand, their covenant with Big Bash League in Australia will make Harmanpreet Kaur and Smriti Mandhana to miss out on the tournament. The gravity of Challanger’s trophy cannot be belittled because it is through her performance in challenger’s trophy, Jemimah Rodrigues made her debut for India women early this year.
The selection committee clearly wants young talent to come forward and has chosen Shikha Pandey, Punam Raut and Mona Meshram to lead India Red, India Blue and India Green respectively.
The squads for the 3 teams are as:
Shikha Pandey, who was dropped from the World T20 has made her comeback with series against New Zealand to be played in February 2019 and is trusted to head team India Red. Veda Krishnamurthy will make the batting side more powerful with her presence. The team has young in-form players like:
- Shivi pandey
The 21-year-old recently grabbed eyeballs when she was declared player of the match after scoring unbeatable 104 runs for Chhatisgarh while playing against Haryana.
- Jasia Akhtar
The first woman cricketer from Jammu and Kashmir to be selected for national camp. Jasia plays for Punjab and has also helped Jammu and Kashmir U-19 team to clinch gold at National school games.
- Radha Yadav
18-year-old Radha Yadav plays for Mumbai, Baroda and west zone. She made her debut for India in early 2018 and was the leading wicket taker for India in world T20, taking 8 wickets in 5 matches.
Squad for India Red: Shikha Pandey (captain), Veda Krishnamurthy, N Anusha, Shivi Pandey, Jasia Akhtar, Jhansi Laxmi, Vrushali Bhagat, Komal Zanzad, Radha Yadav, Shanti Kumari, Tarannum Pathan, Harleen Deol, R kalpana (wicket-keeper)
India Blue has some experience with Mansi Joshi, Sushma Verma at their side with Punam Raut leading the team.
The team has an advantage of young talent like:
- Priya Punia
Priya Punia is the first woman cricketer from Rajasthan to be called to play for India. She will make her debut in the upcoming T20 series against New Zealand.
- Tamanna Nigam
She has been the captain of women’s cricket team of Madhya Pradesh. The 23-year-old has also played for India Green in U-23 Challenger trophy. The all-rounder recently scored a half-century
to make Madhya Pradesh win against Haryana in Women Senior Cricket Tournament.
- G Trisha
The 13 year old already plays for U-19 Hyderabad team and has also played for U-16 and U-23 team. She has led her team to amazing victories by taking wickets and scoring with the bat also.
Squad for India Blue: Punam Raut (captain), Mansi Joshi, Priya Punia, Tanushree Sarkar, Bharti Fulmali, Aditi Sharma, Tamanna Nigam, Reema Laxmi Ekka, Manali Dakshini, G trisha, Tanuja Kanwer, Minnu Mani, Sushma Verma (wicket-keeper)
India Green is to be captained by Mona Meshram. Among others are Arundhati Reddy and Shubhlaxmi Sharma who have already played for India.
Sushree Divyadarshini captains the U-23 team of Odisha. The other promising players are:
- Shefali Verma
She has played for U-19 India Green and U-23 T20 women’s league for Haryana and was the highest run scorer for Haryana, she scored 220 runs in 8 games.
- Anita Lodhi
Anita plays for Assam and her recent half-century and 2 wickets led Assam to victory against Jammu and Kashmir in Senior Women ODI tournament.
- Sneh Rana
She started playing cricket at the age of 7 and was the captain of U-19 Punjab team and made her debut for India against Sri Lanka.
Squad for India Green: Mona Meshram (captain), Shefali Verma, D Hemalatha, Tejal Hasabnis, Sneh Rana, Arundhati Reddy, Devyani Prasad, Shubhlaxmi Sharma, Renuka Singh, Sushree Dibyadarshini, SB keerthana, Anita Lodhi, Shweta Verma (wiket-keeper)