Indian women’s cricket team led by Mithali Raj made the whole country proud with their spectacular showings in the 2017 ICC Women's World Cup. Even though the eventual result was a bit heartbreaking as the ‘Women in Blue’ couldn’t quite hold their nerves and lost the final agonizingly to England by 9 runs, but the greeting which they received upon their arrival in the homeland was awe-inspiring, to say the least.
However, a very people know what the women's team skipper Mithali had gone through during her early struggling days. On Saturday, Raj herself recalled those horror days as she used to travel in unreserved train from Hyderabad to Delhi.
"There were a lot of struggles in my journey. Now we are under the BCCI, but that time (when women cricketers were not under the board), the normal basic facility which a sportsperson gets to play even (we did not get). As an India cricketer, I have travelled unreserved from Hyderabad to Delhi by train, as an India player," Mithali was quoted by PTI as saying at a session of 'We The Women' initiative.
“He [Rahul Dravid] said he has never travelled in train as an India player, but I did. But those difficulties make us strong. As women we face so many challenges at an early stage, that when we mature and take up the challenges, we become so strong mentally, that we can do so many things, that we ourselves don't believe that we are capable of," she further added.
Being a woman Mithali had to cope up with the society as well as her grandparents were not comfortable when she took up sports.
“Because I am from South India, my grandparents were not comfortable that I was playing a sport (cricket). My parents had to bear a lot, but they have cocooned my life in such a way, that I did not have to deal with the negativity," the 35-year-old captain said.
During the momentous occasion, Mithali presented a 'HER' award to Iqra Rasool, a budding cricketer from Jammu and Kashmir, who wants to chase her dream of becoming a fast bowler and is now training in Bengal.