How did Uttarakhand Girls win their first-ever Women’s U19 One Day Championship?

Women’s U19 One Day Tournament, a domestic competition in India, was played between September 28 and October 18. A total of 100 matches were played among 36 teams, divided into six groups, namely, Elite Group A, Elite Group B, Elite Group C, Elite Group D, Elite Group E, and Plate Group.


Coach Anagha Deshpande with the U19 Women's Team holding the Championship Trophy. PC: Instagram
Coach Anagha Deshpande with the U19 Women’s Team holding the Championship Trophy. PC: Instagram


After a 20-day grind, Uttarakhand, who was a part of Elite Group D, emerged victorious as they went on to win their first-ever Women’s U19 One Day Championship. Uttarakhand, a team that received BCCI affiliation in 2017, beat Madhya Pradesh in the finals by eight wickets to clinch the title.

Uttarakhand Squad: Raghvi Anand Singh Bist, Taniya Kanaujiya Narendra Singh, Jyoti Jeewan Giri, Pooja Lekh Raj, Shagun Somveer Choudhary, Pallavi Raj Semwal, Nandini Unesh Kumar Kashyap, Siddhi Shekhar Chandra Pandey, Vanshika Vinod Bhandari, Neelam Naresh Bhardwaj, Nisha Vishwas Mishra, Ankita Mohar Shah, Laxmi Khilap Singh Basera, KM Aarti Bachan Bhandari, Gaytri Heera Arya, Ankita Manmohan Singh Bisht, Kanak Bhupesh Tapraniya, Minakshi T Trilok Chand, Jigyasa Suryapal Tomar, Sakshi Ramesh Joshi

To know more about Uttarakhand’s journey in the tournament, Female Cricket got in touch with Anagha Deshpande, Uttarakhand women’s U19 coach, and Nandini Kashyap, wicket-keeper bat, who plays for Uttarakhand women’s U19.


Uttarakhand U19 Women's Squad
Uttarakhand U19 Women’s Squad


Anagha said, “This was my first year with Uttarkhand U19 and I am happy that we completed the tournament as champions. Just one month back before the tournament, I took charge of the U10 team. Before that, I was with the senior team. The girls in the team are extremely talented and hard-working. They not only have a good skill set but also are physically strong. My coaching experience with the side was wonderful. The girls were willing to learn new things, which helped them achieve success. Apart from the team, Cricket Association of Uttarakhand has been very proactive and they strive hard for the development of women’s cricket in the state.”

Nandini said, “Honestly, we were not even expecting to qualify given that we had a relatively inexperienced team. Credit goes to AD (Anagha Deshpande) ma’am for bringing out the best in each one of us and ultimately guiding us to our first ever championship. She was less like a typical coach and more like a player. Her experience of playing for India reflected in her coaching which helped us a lot.”

Nandini added, “Cricket Association of Uttarakhand has been very supportive. They provide us with good facilities, organize training camps, off season camps as well as a lot of matches. Just before this one-day tournament, we played an invitational tournament in Bangalore against Karnataka. We played four one-day matches there. That match experience helped us going into the competition.”

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Uttarakhand was not dependent on any one player to win them matches but rather had different players each time they stepped on to the group.


Support Staff for Uttarakhand U19 Women's Cricket Team
Support Staff for Uttarakhand U19 Women’s Cricket Team


Nandini said, “Every match we had a different match-winner. We were enjoying ourselves in the middle and I think that helped us win the championship. Also, our captain Pooja Raj was amazing throughout the tournament. She led by example and took the team along.”

After the Women’s U19 One Day Tournament, 56 girls have been selected for the Challenger Trophy that will be played from November 2 to November 7 in Jaipur. The players are divided into four teams, namely, India A, India B, India C, and India D. Six girls from Uttarakhand have made the cut for the Challenger Trophy, and also their coach Anagha Deshpande will be a part of the tournament as she will be coaching India A.

Players from Uttarakhand selected for the Challenger Trophy: Nandini Kashyap, Minakshi Singh, Pooja Raj, Raghvi Bisht, Neelam Bhardwaj, Sakshi Singh

Anagha said, “I am pleased to be selected as a coach of India A for the U19 Challenger Trophy. It will be a challenging assignment, given that I do not have any of the Uttarakhand players on the team. At the same time, it will be interesting to have new players in the mix. I am looking forward to this tournament.”

I am a former cricketer having represented Mumbai University at All India University level. I was a part of MCA probables for the U-19 and U-23 age group. I have been an avid cricket writer for the last five years. Currently I am pursuing my Ph.D from IIT Bombay.

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