Women’s Cricket for India began with the start of Women’s IPL. Stars like Jhulan Goswami and Smriti Mandhana are back on the cricketing field after a break of months. Lisa Sthalekar, for Cricbuzz, covers the Women’s T20 Challenge games and offers some of the most thought-provoking insights from the continuous action.
Her words after the second match played between Trailblazers and Velocity deserve many ears. Even Lisa, while ending her reportage, used the phrase “Food for thought”. The contest between Velocity and Trailblazers was not a memorable one as the encounter was one-sided. While matches are common in cricketing fixtures throughout the globe, women are subjected to a different observation.
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) November 5, 2020
It is often said that they are not on par with their counterparts and as Lisa points out that fans have commented that “they seem 10 years behind the male cricketers”.
These are not new comments and often come from the viewers catching women’s games for the first time on their television sets. Lisa accurately states that the worlds of male and female cricketers are miles apart. Women, from India, have not had a competitive game after their outing in the finals of the T20 World Cup.
Further, the pitches as cricket fans would know have had the complete edition of the Indian Premier League on them. The 50-odds day tournaments have had the better of tracks. As a result, they have grown slow and low. Lisa further says that while women lack physical power like their male counterparts, these pitches offer no help for competitive cricket to take place.
She recalls the world cup final when a lively pitch got a Housefull attendance at MCG and billions at their screens entertained. Lisa further highlights the scheduling of the tournament after hoping that groundsmen will look to rejuvenate the pitch. She rightly asks the viewers if they would ask their male superstars to stay in quarantine for 8 and 6 days in two different countries and play at their prime after training of roughly a week or so.
It is interesting to note that Lisa reminds us that women have to thank boards for the matches as they have to go through long periods of undesired breaks and durations of uncertainty. While we tune in to see WIPL this season, we must revisit the words from Lisa and remember that female players come from a different street. They have their own, and novel, challenges, and their journey.
A student who enjoys studying cricket more than anything else, keen to learn the insights of the women’s game.