Veteran India batswoman Mithali Raj is likely to call time on her T20 International career after the home series against England next month. Nonetheless, Mithali will continue to play the 50-over format where she is still the captain of the side.
During the Women’s T20 World Cup in West Indies last year, Raj was benched in the all-important semi-final against England and that decision resulted in a fall out between her and the interim coach Ramesh Powar. Mithali was also left out from the playing XI of first T20 against the White Ferns on Wednesday.
“Mithali understands that skipper Harmanpreet Kaur will like to concentrate on building a team for the 2020 World T20 and that she is unlikely to feature in that tournament,” a senior BCCI official told PTI on condition of anonymity. “But a player of her stature should get a warm send-off and that is likely to be against England,” the official said.
It is understood that Mithali can read the writing on the wall and the cricket board will give her chance to retire on her own terms from the shortest format.
“It is still not sure whether she would like to play the full series against England or like former men’s team pacer Ashish Nehra, play the first game of the series and retire,” the official further added.
Mithali’s spot in the T20 side has been under scanner owing to her cautious approach and waning fielding abilities. In 85 T20Is, Mithali has amassed 2283 runs with the highest score of 97 including 17 half-centuries.