Updated: Jan 17, 2022
This article is about the first Indian female cricketer to score a century in both ODIs and Tests in Australia who already claimed e Rachael Heyhoe-Flint Award for the best female cricketer of the year
Yes, We are talking about Smriti Shriniwas Mandhana, the batswoman who had the good fortune of being gifted a practice bat by batting legend Rahul Dravid, which was turned into to record a double ton in one day cricket
Authored By:- Ashwin Jangam ( Cricket Analyst, Host and Entertainer)
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If someone asks me the definition of elegance, I'll show them cover drives coming off Smriti's bat. If a book on the perfect drives on offside and straight lofted shots has to be made, it would have all its chapters on Smriti.
Smriti Mandhana, the name is known to every person on this planet who plays or watches cricket. Her eye-pleasing batting has always garnered the attention of the cricketing world. Subsequently, the fans and admirers of her batting are not just the viewers, but also the legends of the game who have made the game popular.
Smriti is one of the best left-handers in the history of the game across genders. But surprisingly, she lifted the first bat within her hand as a right-handed batsman. It was after seeing her left-handed brother, she started batting as a left-hander. Little did her brother know, a batting style influenced by him to his beloved sister would bring joy to a billion people.
Hailing from Madhavnagar, Sangli in Maharashtra, the batter started her professional cricket coaching there itself. Her talent was visible at a very young age when she was selected for Maharashtra U-15 at the age of 9, and U-19 at the age of 11. She made her debut for the Women in Blue in April 2013. But it was in October 2013 when her popularity rose after she became the first Indian woman to score a double hundred in an ODI in domestic Cricket.
Since then, the run machine is on a roll creating new records every time she steps on the field. The chase master loves chasing both- the target and new records. She has a record of scoring more than 50 runs in 11 consecutive matches where our team was chasing. On the 12th occasion too, she broke the streak just by 1 run while getting out on 49.
The only Indian centurion in ODI and Test on Australian soil also has the highest individual score by any batter of any team against the Kangaroos in Australia. Her immense contribution to ODI's and T20's is known by everyone. And even though she has played few test matches, her rock-solid batting was the reason India could Excel in those test matches.
Courtesy : ESPN CRIC INFO
While men cricketers from abroad come to India to play the IPL, the immensely talented Smriti has played in various leagues across the globe, and her magnificent performance in all these leagues have left the world in awe of her batting. She also led Trailblazers to victory in the Women's T20 Challenge.
A sensational cricketer, a magician with the bat, a true leader and a symbol of women empowerment, Smriti continues to inspire women in every possible way. A career of 8 years for her playing for India has had so much to offer from her, one can only imagine what and how much more she can offer in the decade more she will be playing for the Women in Blue. Her scintillating batting has attracted viewers to watch women's cricket in huge numbers. And in the near future, when women cricket will have full glory days with exponentially increased viewership, Smriti and her batting would be one of the primary reasons to reach this destination.