There is an old saying that what a man can do, a woman can do even better. This saying has been the source of motivation to women around the world making them take up jobs and activities men have beem naturally assigned to do.
However, women have been seen by some men as weaker vessels and think they don’t deserve the equal rights and status, that men have been experiencing for generations, like rights to proper education, opinion amongst others, freedom of speech etc.
Not to stray away from the topic, in India we all love cricket as much as we love food, in schools, in local street corner and aisles you can with ease find children batting and slugging it out with their peers playing cricket, from dusk till dawn. We all know that boys are barely grown and already playing cricket with their friends, representing their schools and some even go as far as playing cricket at Club level, but sadly there is no similar trend in women.
One of the reasons why women’s cricket in India is so undermined is the absence of publicity and lack of opportunity to girls who want to play and participate this sport. Also the unavailability of the funds by the sport associations is unbelievably devastating.
Sunitha Anand wicket keeper from Hyderabad who was a member of the National team that won the Twenty20 Asia Cup on China last year said a few things in one of her interviews with ESPN
“If girls aren’t given the chance to play more matches, our standards will never rise,” “You only find out how much you have developed as a player when you play in a match. Nets can take you only so far; matches are what really count.” She also went on to say that “I have a lot of friends who want to play cricket just for fun,”
“They don’t want to take it up seriously, so joining the women’s academy in Gymkhana [Hyderabad] would be pointless, but then again, there is nowhere else they can go. It would really help if there were other places where girls could learn to play recreational cricket, even if they aren’t serious about it.”
Sadly you can never spot a group of girls playing cricket or even joining the boys to play. Another bitter truth is that these academies do not even admit ladies to start with. Neither do they focus on apt training, their equipments or for their basic player needs. These are a few reasons amidst many due to which the women’s cricket got underestimated.
A huge and bold start first eliminating the status quote set by the society limiting and restricting women to just spectators and cooks was slashed when, the Indian women’s cricket team actually had an outstanding run of games. We see them as a work in progress with the team winning last year’s edition of the ODI World Cup, collecting rewards and the massive crowd that came to appreciate the team they proved critics wrong by actually defying all odds to win that tournament. Unfortunately the team haven’t been in that top notch performance since then.
Even after changes in the team’s management were made and that didn’t seem to turn tides for them though, with the ODI World Cup only a few weeks away we can only hope that the team gets it right and delivers a classic performance.
All our girls want is just acceptance, just the winning tears brimming in our eyes, just the excitement and just the round of applause roaring “Well played girls!”.
Lalana suvarna is a commerce professional, her interests include reading, eating and writing.