Mithali Raj retires after serving Indian Cricket for 23 Years

Her 23-year journey on 22-yards finally came to an end when Mithali Raj decided to retire from all forms of international cricket on June 8, 2022. Having started her international career on June 26, 1999, life came full circle for the 39-year-old Raj.


Mithali Raj retires after serving Indian Cricket for 23 Years
Mithali Raj retires after serving Indian Cricket for 23 Years


Signing off from international cricket as the leading run-getter in the world of women’s sport, Raj was last seen in the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup in New Zealand that was played early this year. While she has achieved many milestones in her illustrious international career, an ICC trophy was something that eluded her. Having come so close in 2005 and 2017, there were high expectations from the people of India and Mithali Raj’s fans all over the world that she would finally get her hands to the World Cup in this edition of this tournament, which was likely to be her swan song. However, a devastating defeat in the virtual knock-out match against South Africa shattered 1.35 billion Indian hearts as the dream of winning a World Cup was not realized.

In her 333 international appearances, the right-handed top-order batter mustered 10,868 runs across all three formats. She stood like a wall more often than not when the going got tough for India. She weathered all the storm and sailed through with ease bailing her team out on many occasions. Unequivocally, she was the backbone of India’s batting. She stood there like the sun and let the other batters revolve around her when she was out in the middle. Stamping her authority with elegance and grace, there is seldom a doubt that she has created a massive vacuum in Indian women’s cricket. Filling her big boots will not be a cakewalk, and it will only be interesting to see who carries Raj’s legacy forward.

Women’s cricket was not that popular when Raj started playing. However, when she has drawn curtains on her decorated career, she has made sure that Indian women cricketers have become household names and inspired thousands of girls to take up cricket as a profession. As John F. Kennedy once said, “One person can make a difference, and everyone should try” in the case of Mithali Raj, we can undoubtedly say that she did make a difference in changing the landscape of women’s cricket in India.

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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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