Mithali Raj announces retirement from T20 Internationals

Indian Women’s cricketer Mithali Raj announced retirement from T20 Internationals. She led India in 32 T20Is India including 3 Women’s T20 World Cups in 2012, 2014 and 2016.

Mithali Raj was captain when India played their first ever women’s T20 International in Derby in 2006. In 89 T20 Internationals, Mithali scored 2364 runs including 17 fifties with a career-best 97 not out.

Mithali Raj played her last T2I against England on March 9, 2019 and remained unbeaten on 30 off 32 balls.

Mithali Raj in a press release issued by the BCCI was quoted, “After representing India in T20 internationals since 2006, I wish to retire from T20Is to focus my energies on readying myself for the 2021 One Day World Cup. It remains my dream to win a World Cup for my country and I want to give it my best. I thank the BCCI for their continuous support and wish the Indian T20 team good luck as they prepare for the home series against South Africa Women.”

Only recently, Mithali Raj had said she would be available for the T20I series against South Africa, starting September 24. The selectors were scheduled to meet on September 5 to pick the India women’s squad for the 5-match series in Surat.

However, Mithali Raj had said she wasn’t sure about her participation in next year’s T20 World Cup to be held between February 21 and March 8 in Australia.

A major controversy broke in November 2018 when Mithali Raj left out of the World T20 semi-final against England. India went on to lose and reports emerged of a rift between Mithali Raj and India’s current T20I skipper Harmanpreet Kaur.

Mithali was also excluded from Indian women’s next T20 International against New Zealand in Wellington in February. Harmanpreet Kaur had explained the decision and said the idea was to give younger girls more opportunity.

Source : Various