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5 Promising Women Who Just Made Their Debut In The 2021 Test Match

Sneh Rana, Shafali Verma, Pooja Vastrakar, Deepti Sharma and Tanya Bhatia made their test debut a couple of days ago. Congratulations to them!

Sneh Rana, Shafali Verma, Pooja Vastrakar, Deepti Sharma and Tanya Bhatia made their test debut a couple of days ago. Congratulations to them!

Test cricket is the oldest, longest and considered the most challenging format of the game. Surprising though it sounds, Indian women’s test cricket kick-started way back in the 70s. However, the team played as few as 36 test games before the one-off against England in 2021.

Diana Edulji, the star test cricketer and member of Committee of Administrators, said that she always envisioned for India to play more tests. A day before the game, she expressed her delight that it materialised, finally. Mithali Raj, the captain and one of the recognised faces of women’s cricket worldwide, also hoped this would usher more series in all three formats of the game.

Irrespective of the result, this match should be spoken about. One strong reason being that women’s cricket, in general, needs to be spoken about. Second being, five women made their test debut in the game. Indian cricket team’s official Instagram handle shared these heart-warming photos of the girls receiving their test caps from their captain. Surely, this moment is a celebration in itself. The debutant women are Sneh Rana, Shafali Verma, Pooja Vastrakar, Deepti Sharma and Tanya Bhatia.

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The moment was immensely emotional for Sneh Rana, who recently lost her father. She dedicated all her future efforts to him.

Mithali Raj remembered how she didn’t have any ceremony when she made her test debut back in the day. She said that the ceremony of giving the test kits to the girls not only makes them excited but also reminds them of the fact that they are scripting history.

There were high expectations from the young sensation Shafali Verma, who is all of 17 years and made her international cricket debut at 15. The master blaster Sachin Tendulkar himself said that it is a beautiful time for her to express herself. Sachin also expressed his happiness that the girls are playing test cricket after very long and gave some valuable advice.

And, she did it! Shafali smashed 96 out of 152 balls on her test debut. She shared a 167 run partnership with Smriti Mandhana before leaving in the 49th over of Day 2.

Match summary

The match started on 16 June 2021.

In their first innings, England scored 396, with Sneh Rana picking 4 wickets and Deepti Sharma, 3. India’s first innings was massive with Shafali’s scintillating 96 and Smriti’s 78. In India’s second as well, Shafali bagged another half century and so did Deepti Sharma. Alongside numerous records, Shef-awe-li became the first woman to hit three sixes in a test match. Sneh Rana hit an 80 to steer the total to 348, following which the match was drawn. No brownies for guessing that Shafali Verma was the Player of the Match.

As commentator Harsha Bhogle said, irrespective of the result, Shefali and Smriti grabbed a lot of eyes for the game. And, with such promising innings, the audience is here to stay.

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