Mithali Raj responds to Ramesh Powar’s accusations against her

Powar, in his report submitted to BCCI had accused Mithali of “blackmailing” and “pressurising coaches”.

Mithali Raj was benched for the semi-final against England | Getty

Indian women’s cricketer Mithali Raj on Thursday (November 29) reacted to coach Ramesh Powar’s hard-hitting allegations against her, saying that it’s the darkest day of her life and all the hard work through her career had gone in vain.

Powar, in his report submitted to BCCI CEO Rahul Johri and GM (Cricket Operations) Saba Karim, had accused the veteran batswoman of “blackmailing” and “pressurising coaches”. He also claimed that Mithali threatened to retire midway through the World T20 after being denied the opening slot.

Taking to Twitter, Mithali Raj wrote: “I’m deeply saddened & hurt by the aspersions cast on me. My commitment to the game & 20yrs of playing for my country. The hard work, sweat, in vain.”

“Today, my patriotism doubted, my skill set questioned & all the mud slinging- it’s the darkest day of my life. May god give strength,” she further added.

Powar’s 10-page tour report is almost entirely on Mithali, covering nearly five pages in all.

“I hope Mithali stops blackmailing, pressurising coaches and putting her interest first than the team. Before Pakistan match, video analyst Pushkar Sawant came to my room and said that fielding coach Biju George has conveyed to him that Mithali is upset with batting order and packed her bags with announcement of retirement in the morning. I was saddened by her attitude and it gave me an impression that Mithali Raj comes first and then India. She threw a lot of tantrums and created a lot of chaos,” Powar wrote while reviewing Mithali’s performance in the tournament.

India's decision to drop Mithali for the all-important semi-final against England came under the scanner after they suffered an eight-wicket defeat in Antigua on Thursday (November 22). Mithali had batted twice in the tournament, registering the scores of 56 and 51 against Pakistan and Ireland respectively. Her experience might have come handy on a slow pitch in Antigua, where India got bundled out on 112. England chased down the paltry target with 2.5 overs to spare.


By Salman Anjum - 29 Nov, 2018

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