5 Indian women who can feature in the upcoming WBBL
After the stupendous success, the Indian women got on the field in the World Cup, pretty many of them are likely to feature in the upcoming 2017-17 season of the WBBL.
Updated - Sep 22, 2017 12:27 am
Women’s cricket has been deprived of the rightful attention it deserves for long. However, the ICC Women’s World Cup, 2017 has been a game-changer for women’s cricket as it has been successful in directing the spotlight towards extremely talented players as well as evoking interest in viewers. Indian women, as a team, had a stellar run in the tournament and lost the trophy by only a whisker against England. As the lasses of the Indian team battled the best of opposition, what came to the forefront is the plethora of flair and skill that the lot possess.
While numerous bilateral series and tournaments of the shorter formats are organised in plenty for the men’s team, the women’s teams aren’t exposed to that amount of cricket worldwide. An exception to this is the Australian T20 Tournament, Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL). The championship for every season kicks off at around the month of December. After the stupendous success, the Indian women got on the field in the World Cup, pretty many of them are likely to feature in the upcoming 2017-17 season of the WBBL.
Let’s take a look at 5 Indian players who might feature in the upcoming WBBL:
1. Smriti Mandhana
21-year-old Smriti has been regarded as the nation’s heartthrob of late as she shot to fame with her swashbuckling batting skills in the Women’s World Cup. Having made her made her ODI and T20I debuts in 2013, the youngster possesses ample skill and talent as a hard-hitting batter. Her flamboyant innings of 106 runs off 108 deliveries against West Indies made her the apple of almost every Indian cricket lover’s eye.
Mandhana had been signed on by the Brisbane Heat franchise in the previous season of the WBBL. She is only the second Indian woman cricketer to have featured in a foreign T20 league. However, she was recalled midway by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), in order to participate in the training camp for the 2017 World Cup qualification tournament. Smriti didn’t have as successful a run as she would’ve wished for in the previous season, Mandhana exudes talent and is sure to be one of the front-runners for the upcoming WBBL.
2. Veda Krishnamurthy
Right-handed batter, Veda Krishnamurthy is widely known for her feisty nature and the upbeat spirit that she infuses into her game. Armed with oodles of talent and the right amount of aggression, Krishnamurthy has consolidated her position in International Women’ Cricket since she made her debut for the shorter formats in 2011.
The Women’s World Cup, 2017 saw her feature 6th in the list of players with the highest strike rates. Having played 6 matches in the tournament, the 24-year old amassed 153 runs, while sporting a staggering strike rate of 112.50. If given a chance, Veda is sure to be the perfect choice for the WBBL, a tournament characterised by power-hitting.
3. Punam Raut
Opening batter, Punam Raut is no stranger to hitting match-winning knocks. She was one of the prominent starts for India in their quest for the World Cup in 2017. Her record-breaking opening stand worth 320 runs with Deepti Sharma versus Ireland in May 2017 won her accolades from fans and critics alike.
At 27 years of age, Raut has accrued 719 runs in the 35 T20Is that she’s played till date. The World Cup, in itself, saw her score 381 runs in only 9 innings, including a highest individual score of 106. She’s also an option when it comes to chipping in into the bowling attack, being an occasional right-arm off-break bowler and has the best bowling figures of 3 wickets for 12 runs in T20I cricket.
4. Harmanpreet Kaur
All-rounder Harmanpreet Kaur has already rubbed shoulders with the cream of players at the WBBL itself, in the 2016-17 season of the tournament. She holds the privilege of being the first Indian woman cricketer to have been a part of a T20 league abroad. Kaur is the first Indian player to be signed up by a BBL team. She played in the previous season for the franchise, Sydney Thunder and proved to be quite a powerful asset for them, before she was recalled, along with Mandhana by the BCCI for a training camp. Kaur was awarded the franchise’s Player of the Tournament for her all-round show in the debut season.
On her part, 28-year-old Kaur is bound to be a key player for any team she features in, owing to her sound batting skills as well as her proficiency in the art of bowling. Essentially, she’s a right-handed batter and a right-arm medium-fast bowler. She excelled in the 2017 World Cup and her notable performance came in the form of stunning innings of 171 runs against Australia in a crucial semi-final game. Having 1223 runs in 60 innings along with 15 wickets in 29 innings stacked up in her T20I quiver, Kaur is definitely a player to watch out for in the WBBL.
5. Deepti Sharma
20-year old, Deepti Sharma is one of the youngest in the lot of Indian players. A left-handed batter and a right-arm off-spinner, Sharma is a valuable package for a team. The all-rounder made her ODI debut in November 2014 followed by her T20 debut 2 years later. She, aided by Punam Raut set up a record-breaking opening partnership of 320 runs in India’s match against Ireland, in May 2017, where she contributed 188 runs.
Sharma also possesses healthy batting figures of 961 runs in 30 ODIs at an average of 43.68 and the T20 exposure of a championship as competitive as the WBBL will only boost her confidence and bring her abundant talent to the centre stage at the international level.