New Delhi: The first-ever women’s blind cricket team will represent India in a bilateral series against Nepal, which will be played at Pokhara and Kathmandu in Nepal from April 25 to 30.
The team will play five T20s, the Cricket Association for the Blind in India (CABI) said in a press conference on Friday.
The tournament is a major development in the efforts of CABI and Samarthanam Trust for the Disabled to uplift the women players in the game.
The probables for the team were selected from the National Championships held earlier in the year and the final team was selected after a national camp held in Bhopal. The team will be captained by Sushma Patel who is a B3 Category player.
Harmanpreet Kaur, Captain of the Indian women’s team is the brand ambassador of the Indian women’s blind cricket team.
“I am proud and happy to be associated with the team. They are an inspiration to many young girls who want to overcome their disabilities and play the sport at the highest level. I get more energy when I see these girls and it helps me give encouragement to achieve for the country,” Harmanpreet was quoted as saying in a media release.
India will play Nepal in five T20s in which the first two matches will be played at the Pokhara Cricket Ground, Kaski and the remaining matches will be played at the Mulpani Cricket Ground, Kathmandu.
“This is the result of our continuous efforts to support and bring our girls to the forefront of the game. I believe that this tour will be a great exposure for our team and we hope to provide them with many more such tours in the future.
This is just the first step towards making the game accessible for more women and encouraging them to take up the sport and our team will be the trendsetters for a huge change for women’s Blind Cricket in India. I wish our girls the very best for the series,” said Dr G.K Mahantesh, President, CABI, while talking about the efforts for uplifting the women’s game.
The inauguration for the Women’s Bilateral T20 Cricket Series for the Blind 2023 will be held on April 25 at the Pokhara Cricket Ground followed by the opening match. The team will arrive on April 23 in Kathmandu.
“We have selected our best possible team for this series from a pool of very talented players. We believe that these players who have created history will make all the country proud and I wish our players the best for the series,” said E. John David, Secretary General, CABI.
Harmanpreet Singh joined the press conference virtually while G.K Mahantesh, President, CABI; E. John David, General Secretary, CABI; Shailender Yadav, Secretary, North Zone, CABI and Sushma Patel, captain, Indian women’s blind cricket team were present at the occasion.
India Women’s Blind Cricket Team squad:
B1 Category: Killaka Sandhya (Andhra Pradesh), U. Varsha (Karnataka), Padmini Tudu (Odisha), Simu Das (Rajasthan), Priya (Madhya Pradesh), Valasanaini Ravanni (Andhra Pradesh)
B2 Category: Gangavva Neelappa Harijan (Vice Captain, Karnataka), Sandra Davis (Kerala), Basanti Hansda (Odisha), Pritiben Desai (Gujarat), Prity Prasad (Delhi)
B3 Category: Sushma Patel (Captain, Madhya Pradesh), Phula Saren(Odisha), Ganga Kadam (Maharashtra), Deepika TC (Karnataka), Jhili Birua (Odisha), M. Satyavathi (Andhra Pradesh)