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Want to try one last time to bring the World Cup to India: Mithali Raj

Mithali announced her retirement from T20 International cricket in September last year.

SNS | New Delhi |

Indian batswoman Mithali Raj has stated that she would want to give one final shot at winning the ICC Cricket World Cup before deciding to hang up her boots. Raj who was the captain of the team that reached the finals of the ICC Women’s World Cup in 2005 and 2017 is talking about the 50 over’s World Cup that is scheduled to happen in February-March next year.

The 36-year-old admits that she is entirely focusing on that tournament after announcing her retirement from T20I Cricket in September last year.

Mithali had earlier stated that she wants the 2021 World Cup to be her swansong and that is the reason why she is fiercely determined to participate in the tournament.

“I am looking forward to 2021 World Cup (50 over). Want to try one last time to bring the World Cup trophy to India in 2021. I need to keep myself motivated for 2021. I just want people to continue to support women’s cricket,” she told Sanjay Manjrekar on the ESPNcricinfo Videocast.

“When it comes to the final, there are nerves. Both the final, the first steps we put were very shaky. In 2017 final, we lost the first wicket in the second over. In, 2020 T20 World Cup final, Deepthi (Sharma) was given the first over, she bowled a couple of full-tosses,” Raj pointed out.

Another reason why Mithali decided to focus only on 50 overs cricket was that she was never quite the biggest hitter of the cricket ball something which is expected in the shortest format of the game.

“When I started, I was an opener. In my second series, the 2000 World Cup, I batted number 3 and the strike rate was good at that time because I did not have the burden of carrying the team around me. But after that from being someone who could score 50 off 40 balls, I became someone who would start slowly,” she said.

“No matter whichever level I played, it has always been like that because the team’s plan was that. I can’t deviate from that plan because the team wanted me to play in that way. With that kind of approach, I started scoring more runs. My role has been that for a long time. I think I was chained to a certain kind of role throughout my career,” she concluded.