Asha Sobhana becomes India’s oldest ODI debutant in Women’s Cricket

The Indian women’s cricket team, under the leadership of skipper Harmanpreet Kaur, is hosting South Africa for a multi-format series from June 16 to July 9. The series will feature three One-Day Internationals (ODIs) at Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bangalore. Following the ODI series, the teams will compete in a one-off, four-day red-ball Test match and three Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is), all in Chennai. Asha Sobhana was introduced for her debut in the first ODI match.

Asha Sobhana becomes India’s oldest ODI debutant in Women’s Cricket
Asha Sobhana becomes India’s oldest ODI debutant in Women’s Cricket

The Women’s Selection Committee had earlier announced the India squad on May 30 for this series, which included the maiden call-up of Asha Shobhna for the ODIs.

On June 16, 2024, in the first ODI match, Asha made her debut for India at the age of 33 years and 92 days. Showcasing her leg-break bowling style, her inclusion has strengthened the Indian bowling lineup, making her the oldest debutant for India in ODIs.

Oldest Indians to debut in WODIs:

Asha Sobhana: 33 years, 92 days vs South Africa, 16th June 2024
Seema Pujare: 31 years, 238 days vs Sri Lanka, May 03, 2008
Varsha Raffel: 29 years, 268 days vs Australia, December 13, 2004
Soniya Dabir: 29 years, 222 days vs England, February 24, 2010
Saika Ishaque: 28 years, 81 days vs Australia, December 28, 2023

The 2024 Women’s Premier League served as a significant platform for Asha to showcase her talent, propelling her into the global spotlight. As one of the leading bowlers for the 2024 WPL champions, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Asha achieved the season’s first five-wicket haul and secured 12 wickets in 10 innings, emerging as one of the leading wicket-takers.

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Due to her WPL success, she later went on to debut for India in the fourth T20I against Bangladesh during the away series in April-May, becoming India’s oldest T20I debutant at the age of 33 years and 51 days. She ended the series with four wickets in two matches.

In the One-Day format, prior to her success in the WPL, Asha represented the Cricket Association of Pondicherry in the 2023-24 Women’s One-Day Trophy. She demonstrated her bowling prowess by taking 16 wickets in just seven innings, including a four-wicket haul and a five-wicket haul. She maintained an exceptional economy of 2.99 and averaged 11.62.

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