Nepal’s Blind Women’s Cricket Team will tour to Pakistan to play a series of 5 T20s starting from 29 January. Nepal women will reach Pakistan on 27 January. Pakistan’s Blind women cricket team will be preparing for the series in an eleven-day training camp in Abbottabad, starting from January 15. The series between Pakistan and Nepal was planned way back in 2014, but due to dearth of funding the series could not be played. The series will be played as per the following schedule:
1st T20- January 29 in Lahore
2nd T20- January 31 in Faisalabad
3rd T20- February 1 in Faisalabad
4th T20- February 3 in Islamabad
5th T20- February 4 in Islamabad
This will be the third ever series in the history of blind women’s cricket. The first series was played between United Kingdom and Nepal in 2014, where Nepal women won. The second ever series was played in July 2018 between United Kingdom women and West Indies women in West Indies. United Kingdom women beat West Indies women by 4-1, in a series of 5 T20 matches.
Pakistan’s side will play under the captaincy of Rabia Shahzadi. Aneela Shahzadi is named the vice-captain of the team. Pakistan Blind women’s cricket team’s 15 member squad:
B-1 category: Aqsa Arif, Bushra Zahoor, Samaya Mumtaz, Aneela Shahzadi, Saba Gul.
B-2 category: Rabia Shahzadi, Mehwish Rafique, Nimra Rafique, Nisha Bakhsh, Sadia Khalid,
Bisma Hussain, Rabia Javed (wk)
B-3 category: Tayyba Bano, Kiran Rafique, Irum Shahzadi.
Nepal women’s 15 member squad for the series include:
Reeta Thapa, Aasha Regmi, Muna Aryal, Hita Gurung, Sarita Ghimire, Sushma Tamang, Aayushma Chhetri, Bhagwati Amgai, Bimala Rai, Mankeshari Chaudhary, Meena Chhetri, Binita Pun, Geeta Paudel, Bhagwati Bhattarai and Aashika Chaudhary.
While Nepal is the first country to have formed a national team for blind women. Now, this is the first ever international series for blind women’s team of Pakistan. Pakistan’s captain, Sana Mir also expressed her happiness on this development.
England and West Indies also have cricket teams for blind women for their respective nations. India and South Africa are still progressing in this space.
It would be really interesting to see Pakistan’s Blind women’s team displaying their cricket skills for the first time but there is still a long way to go for a bright future of blind women’s cricket.