One of the finest spin-bowling all-rounders to have played the game, Lisa Sthalekar became the 57th inductee into the Australia Cricket Hall of fame. This comes on the back of her being inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2020, just seven years after her retirement. Sthalekar, who has played 8 Tests, 125 ODIs, and 54 T20Is, has scored 3913 runs and has 229 wickets to her name.
The former Australian stalwart made her international debut in 2001 against arch-rivals England as a specialist bowler and within the year she developed into a frontline batter. In early 2003, Sthalekar added to her kitty the coveted test century when she made 120* against England in just her second test match.
Lisa Sthalekar was a part of Australia’s World Cup winning campaign on four occasions- 2005, 2010, 2012, 2013. She was the second-highest run-scorer in the finals of the 2005 World Cup after she walked in to bat with Australia in trouble at 71/3. Not one to shy away from putting in the hard yards, Sthalekar scored a gritty match-winning half-century against India. Her love affair with India continued at the 2013 World Cup finals as well. This time, in her birthplace India, she helped Australia beat West Indies and clinch yet another title before bowing out of the game on a high.
Former Australian Cricketer and now a commentator inducted into the Australian Hall of Fame.
Congratulations @sthalekar93 👊
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) February 5, 2021
Sthalekar, regarded as one of the most important figures in the development of women’s cricket, had natural leadership qualities. While she captained Australia for just a handful of matches, she has led New South Wales to five successive titles in the Women’s National Cricket League. Such was her dedication and love for the game, Sthalekar wanted to be involved with the game even after retirement. In 2011, she became the first woman ever to be appointed to the Australian Cricketers’ Association. In 2015, she paved the way for female commentators in the Indian Premier League when she became one of the four female commentators to be chosen for the same.
During her playing days, she had quite a few records to her name. She was the first player to achieve the double- score of 1000 runs and take 100 wickets in women’s ODI cricket. She is one of only five cricketers in the elite club of having scored 2000 runs and to have taken 100 wickets in the format. Sthalekar also won the Belinda Clark Award for two consecutive years- 2007 and 2008. She was the No.1 all-rounder when the ICC rankings were introduced and she retired as the No.1 all-rounder and bowler in T20Is and No.2 all-rounder and bowler in ODIs.
More than these stats, her career will be defined by her grit, determination, and spirit. From an orphanage in India to one of the best in business in Australia, Sthalekar has come a long way. “
You’re not always going to be successful; you’re going to fall flat on your face at times. But it’s what you take from that and how you take feedback or non-selection and how you turn that into something positive. You’ve got to utilize those misfortunes to your advantage.” Sthalekar told The Scoop Podcast following her induction into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame.
Speaking about Sthalekar’s induction, Peter King, Australian Cricket Hall of Fame Chairman, said, “Lisa Sthalekar comfortably sits at the table of Women’s cricket trailblazers alongside Belinda Clark, Karen Rolton and Melanie Jones and the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame is delighted to welcome her as the latest inductee.”
“As the Australian Women’s Cricket Team conquers all before them, it has been Lisa’s passion and skill as a cricketer and her courage and determination in her post-cricket career, that has driven elite standards of professionalism in the Women’s game. She left the sport as a four-time World cup winner and a plethora of personal accolades, but has continued to advocate and champion the Women’s game as an administrator, commentator, and ambassador.”
Source – ICC
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