The Dropping of Mithali Raj: Do We Finally Care Enough About Women’s Cricket?

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The Dropping of Mithali Raj: Do We Finally Care Enough About Women’s Cricket?

Illustration: Arati Gujar

“M

ithali Raj” was the top trend in India on Twitter at 5.30 am on a Friday, as the Indian women’s team took on the English in the semi-finals of the Women’s T20 World Cup. Previously, this kind of dedication to set an alarm for 5 am, only to sit in front of the TV set on a working day, had been reserved for the men’s cricket team, when they toured Australia, New Zealand, and the West Indies. But with an impressive run in the tournament, the Women in Blue had made it to the semi-finals and the country was rallying behind them.

Mithali Raj wasn’t trending because she had scored a hundred, dropped a sitter, or changed the course of the game in any way. In fact, the game hadn’t even begun, merely a coin had been flipped. The reason everyone was talking about Raj, was because the experienced veteran had been left out of the squad in a crunch knockout game. “Why is Mithali Raj not in the team?” “How can you leave your best batsman out,” fans outraged online.  

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