Smriti Mandhana : The Inspiring Story From Dreams to Glory

Smriti Mandhana born on July 18, 1996, in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India, is an accomplished cricketer representing the Indian women’s national team. She has established herself as a prominent figure in the sport at the professional level. She plays as a left-handed opening batter for the Indian women’s team and can also bowl part-time right-arm medium pace. She is a talented Indian cricketer known for her explosive batting skills and magnificent stroke play.

Background of SMRITI mANDHANA

Her father and brother, Shrivansh, both played cricket at the district level in Sangli, and after watching her brother play in various Maharashtra state under-16 tournaments, they encouraged her to take up cricket. All the hard work paces off and she was selected for the Maharashtra under-15 team at the age of nine.

In October 2013, Smriti Mandhana achieved her first major success when she scored an unbeaten 224 runs off just 150 balls at the Alambic Cricket Ground in Vadodara against Gujarat by playing for Maharashtra. She became the first Indian woman to score a double century in a ODI match.

iNTERNATIONAL cRICKET CAREER

At the young age of 16, Smriti Mandhana embarked on her international cricket journey and has been an integral part of the Indian women’s cricket team ever since her debut in 2013.

Below are some highlights of her career:

  • She scored an unbeaten 200 runs off 157 balls against South Africa and became the first Indian woman to score a double century in a One Day International (ODI) match in 2016. After scoring a century and a half-century, totaling 219 runs, against South Africa.
  • She was named the Player of the Series in the 2018 India Women’s One Day International series against South Africa.
  • In the 2018 Women’s T20 Challenge, she played a quick innings of 61 runs off just 41 balls to help her team, Trailblazers, win the final.
  • In 2018 Women’s World T20, she scored 178 runs at an average of 35.60 in five matches and become Player of the Tournament.
  • In 2019, She became the second-fastest Indian woman to reach 2,000 runs in ODIs, achieving the milestone in just 51 innings.

cLUB cAREER

Smriti Mandhana became one of the first two Indian players to sign up for the league along with Harmanpreet Kaur where she signed a one-year deal with Brisbane Heat to play in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) in September 2016. In January 2017, while playing against Melbourne Renegades, she suffered a strange fall while fielding after delivering the last ball of her over, injuring her knee and ruling her out of the rest of the tournament. She finished that season with 89 runs at a strike rate of 94.68 in 10 matches.

In the 2018/19 WBBL season, Smriti Mandhana joined Hobart Hurricanes and scored 318 runs at a strike rate of 144.54 in 13 matches, including a few half-centuries. She equaled the record for the highest individual score in WBBL by scoring an unbeaten 114 runs off 64 balls against Melbourne Renegades, hitting 14 fours and three sixes in a fierce innings. In 13 matches she scored 377 runs with the average of 34.27 and a strike rate of 130.44. She was the leading run-scorer for Thunder in WBBL 2021. In June 2018, she signed with the current champions, Western Storm, for the Super League, becoming the first Indian to play in the league.

Smriti Mandhana was auctioned for INR 3.4 crores (approximately USD 460,000) by Royal Challengers Bangalore in the inaugural Women’s T20 Challenge auction, making her the most expensive player in the tournament. She was appointed captain of the RCB Women’s team in the opening season but struggled to lead from the front with the bat. She managed only 149 runs in eight matches at an average of 18.62, with a best score of 37.

AwARDS

These esteemed awards celebrated her exceptional contributions to the sport and highlighted her remarkable skills on the field.

  • In 2018, Smriti Mandhana received prestigious accolades for her outstanding performances. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) honored her as the Women’s International Cricketer of the Year, while the International Cricket Council (ICC) recognized her as the Women’s Cricketer of the Year.
  • She also received the honourable ‘Arjuna Award’ in 2019 and Sportswoman of the Year Awards in Sportstar ACES Awards in 2020.
  • Adding futher, she received Rachael Heyhoe-Flint Trophy (ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year 2021) and named in ICC’s 2022 Women’s ODI and T20I Team of the Year

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