A pioneer of women’s cricket in India, Diana Edulji has been inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame. It is an extremely proud and special moment as Edulji is the first Indian woman in the ICC Hall of Fame.
Edulji had an illustrious career and she persevered at a time when cricket was not considered a viable sport for women. She played 20 Test Matches where she scored 1624 runs and took 63 wickets. In 34 ODIs she scored 775 runs and took 46 wickets. One of her memorable series was the test matches against the West Indies. She took 17 wickets, the second most for any player and helped draw the series. In test cricket, she holds the record for having delivered the most deliveries by any woman. She also led the country in three World Cups and in the 1993 World Cup, took 14 wickets.
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She continued to make an impact on the game even after her retirement. As administrator for the Western Railways, she tirelessly worked to increase employment opportunities for female cricketers and contributed to shaping the sports policy of Western and Indian Railways. Many players in the current squad have immensely benefited from her efforts. To honor her contributions to the game, she was awarded the Arjuna Award in 1983 and the Padma Shri in 2002.
Edulji said that she is honored to be inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame. She said, “At the outset, I would like to thank the ICC and the Jury for having selected me to be inducted in the ICC Hall Of Fame 2023. It indeed is a great honour to be the first Indian women cricketer to be inducted and join a galaxy of cricketers, male, and female from across the world. I am delighted to be considered for this award. It’s not only a proud moment for me, my family and friends but also for BCCI and Indian Women’s Cricket.”
Reacting on the same, former captain of India, Anjum Chopra in her X (formerly Twitter) post wrote, “Diana Edulji has been one of the pioneers in Indian womens cricket. A name that every young woman cricketer taking up the sport knew and recognised. Extremely pleasing to have her inducted into the ‘ICC Hall of Fame’. Richly deserved.”
Another great of the game, Jhulan Goswami, in her ICC Column, addressing ‘Diana Ma’am’ wrote, “You are a born leader who has always taken the responsibility on your shoulders and led from the front. Winning and losing is a part of life, but you take the initiative and always try to contribute to society, that is the biggest achievement of all. I am pleased that your contributions to the game have been acknowledged.
“It was during my playing career that I also started to understand your impact on the game in India – how you had helped the development of the Indian Railway women’s teams in 1984 that allowed women’s cricketers to play sport and work at the same time. Those administrative changes were transformational for cricket in our country. They are testament to how hard you have always fought for the game.”
Vaishnavi is a passionate author with an unwavering love for cricket, particularly women’s cricket. Her writing reflects her deep admiration for the sport and her dedication to promoting women’s participation in it. When she’s not following the latest cricket matches, Vaishnavi can be found engrossed in books or enjoying movies.