Interview with Rakshanda Pilankar – Goa State Player

Interview with Rakshanda Pilankar - Goa State Player

1. When and where did you first meet cricket?
I started playing when I was in school. I don’t remember the exact year but started with the neighborhood boy’s playing gully cricket.

2. Walk us through your initial (childhood) cricket days? Any gully cricket moment that you remember?
I was a naughty girl and I was the only one who used to play cricket with all the senior boys. Initially, I used to be their ball-girl, bringing back the ball which went behind or outside the boundary line. Then slowly-slowly, I got introduced in the team and started getting chance to bat and ball. 

3. Did you play any other sport apart from Cricket in your growing years?
I represented Goa at National level in throw-ball. I also liked playing badminton, football and basketball.

4. Any siblings? Were they equally interested in Cricket?
My big brother Rupen, yes he too was interested in cricket.

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5. How did you manage your education along with studies? How easy/difficult was the process?
It was not at all easy but yeah I used to study only 50% of the syllabus and write my exams.

6. Who were your cricketing role model / inspiration whilst growing up?
Brett Lee and now Bhuvaneshwar Kumar. 

7. Why did you choose cricket back then despite knowing the challenges and the hardships one face throughout the career? What was your parent’s perception towards the game?
I started enjoying the game and this love for the game made me continue to play. Yes, you don’t get anything easily and you have to work hard for it and for that you have to face the challenges coming your way. My parents are very supportive.

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8. Which club and Coach did you start your journey with? Which all club have you represented so far?
I started with my school game. My school sir told me to go for practices and at that time Freeda Ma’am was my coach. Now there are Anuradha ma’am, Salma ma’am, Santoshi ma’am who has taught me a lot.

9. Take us through your debut domestic match? Were you excited with the opportunity or nervous with the expectations?
Debut match! Yeah a bit nervous but I bowled well but didn’t get any wickets.

10. You have played for Goa. How has the journey been? Highlight some of the high-low moments you’ve witnessed so far?
I remember our U23 match against Tamil Nadu where we needed 21 runs in the last over to win the match and I scored 20 runs with my partner. The match ended in a draw. 

11. (Approx) how many domestic female players do we have in India right now? What all tournaments are available for them today?
I can’t tell the exact count of female players but female cricket has improved and many girls are getting a chance to showcase their talent.
There are U19, U23 and senior ODI and T20 BCCI tournaments throughout the year. 

12. You recently participated in WPCL held in Mysore? How did you perform there and what do you take away from such tournaments?
To be honest, my performance wasn’t that impressive but yeah I got many things to learn from my team mates as I was playing for another team. It was indeed a well organised tournament. Hoping for more such tournament’s.

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13. Tell us about your coach and how has he/she shaped your cricket career? Who else do you credit for your success today?
My coach Freeda Pareira and trainer Salma Divkar who worked a lot on me and yeah Anuradha Redkar ma’am was also helping me in my skills. Poornima maam, Aparna Maam , Devika Maam have equally played an important role in my cricket career. I’m not yet successful. Many more things to be achieved.

14. Do you set goals for yourself? Or any other trick to measure your performances?
Yes. I do set goals and then work for it. But enjoying the game brings out the performance automatically.

Rakshanda Pilankar - Goa State Cricket Association

15. When not playing cricket, what does a typical day look like for you?
I like to go out with my friends and explore new places and spend time with my parents.

16. Your views on our Female Cricket platform?
Female cricket is really doing a great job. Through their platform, people are getting to know more about female cricketers. It would be my pleasure to participate if Female Cricket is organizing any tournament for girls.

Answer in one word (your favorite):
1. Movie:  Yeh jawaani hai deewani
2. Place to hangout with friends Beaches in goa
3. Cricket player: Bhuvneshwar kumar
4. Junk food: Ice cream
5. Actor / Actress: Hrithik Roshan

Vishal Yadav, Founder & CEO at Female Cricket

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