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Gollum

For no good reason, Ganguly-led BCCI holds women’s cricket back once again

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The new threat of the coronavirus pandemic and the old issue of indifference now threatens to derail all the good work done for women’s cricket.

 

 

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Three years ago in England, India reached the final of the World Cup for the second time and came as close as nine runs to being world champions. But the runners-up finish sparked a first-of-its kind revolution for women’s cricket in India.

A lot has happened since then and the sport has benefitted with an increase in support from BCCI as well as popularity and relevance in India, something that was often ignored in the past by the game’s governance. India reached another World Cup final earlier this year, the T20 World Cup final viewership broke records and a bunch of talented young cricketers have risen up the ranks.

But the new threat of the coronavirus pandemic and the old issue of indifference now threatens to derail all the good work and set women’s cricket back in India by a few years.

The BCCI has pulled the women’s team out of the tour to England citing logistical problems, such as travel restrictions and assembling of training camps amid the coronavirus crisis. At the same time, the same board is working on a rescheduled India Premier League in UAE.

See the difference in standards?

It’s not technically new or surprising given how the women’s cricket in India has been treated for years. At present, the Indian women’s cricket team is without a selection committee or a contact person in BCCI after the resignation of Saba Karim as GM of cricket operations. An advertisement for selectors was put up in January after the term of the Hemalata Kala-led committee ended earlier this year but no appointment has been made as yet.

Meanwhile, women’s domestic cricket in England has returned with the London Cup, weeks after the England and Wales Cricket Board facilitated the resumption of men’s international cricket with matches in bio-secure bubbles. Women’s international cricket is set to return soon as well with South Africa going on their England tour and extending it to fill in for India. The Proteas will begin their training camp for it next week and New Zealand has already begun.

The loss is all India’s and it can’t be blamed on the pandemic alone.

As ODI captain Mithai Raj predicted a few days back, Indian women’s cricket seems to be taking backwards steps.

“Unfortunately, women’s cricket may have been set back by a couple of years by this pandemic as some of the momentum that had been built between India’s success in World Cup 2017 and World T20 2020 has been lost,” she had said.

This momentum was immense as the T20 World Cup final in March broke records in India with 9.02 million fans watching the final.

But the team has played no match since then and with lockdowns in place, training has been sporadic and left to individuals.

The next ODI World Cup, if things go according to plan, will be held from February 6 to March 7 in New Zealand next year and even in these tricky times, there has to be an increased focus on preparation for it. India have qualified directly for it this time. An inexperienced squad finished runners-up last time but the lack of match time should not be a reason for loss again.

An invitation from England for an overseas tour would therefore have been crucial at this time. The ECB’s model has been proved successful with the West Indies series in full swing and Pakistan already there for the next one. The protocols in place are strict and have worked to not spread the virus further.

However, unlike lesser affluent cricket boards like West Indies and Pakistan, India seems hesitant to take the leap.

There is no official confirmation given for why India has pulled out except the logistical one but the underlying issue seems to be that of money. The age-old question of why invest in the women when men bring in more revenue seems to be raising its head again. And finances are a key point here as sports worldwide suffer due to the lockdown.

It stands to reason that a tour would require participation from both parties – ECB and BCCI – perhaps when it comes to the added cost of isolation in the bio-secure bubble and the safety precautions before travelling. Additionally, it would mean appointing a selection panel first up and that involves a lot of planning in the back office as well.

The IPL is understandably a hugely lucrative tournament for the Indian cricket board and therefore all resources are diverted towards it, even if it involves taking hundreds of people to another country. But if cricketers from eight teams can be assembled for the proposed IPL, surely a bunch of 20 international players can be brought together for a training camp?

The Indian women’s cricket team is not known for bench strength and there would not have been too strenuous coordination involved to gather the core squad. But the fact that a selection committee was not in place suggests that there was no plan for cricket to be staged soon.

It also brings up the question of whether the planned IPL in UAE will include the Women’s T20 Challenge as it would have had when it was to be played in the Indian summer. Even for a basic, week-long tournament, the involvement of international cricketers is needed and that would mean more planning for BCCI and the IPL Governing Council. But are they up for it?

Ultimately, it’s a question of initiative and investment for women’s cricket. The backroom situation and partiality in India is not a secret. But as the team goes from strength to strength at world events, the system seems to take another step back.

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Edited by Gollum

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BCCI is misogynist because it held wimen's cricket back.

 

BCCI is waaycist because it did not owe apology to Dar Ul Sami for being called kaalu.

 

BCCI needs to say something anti Semitic now to complete itself.

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Lol unless women's team wins something they will be treated as secondary level no offence though.  NZ women or WI women or hell SA women don't complain about being given less attention.  In fact except maybe Aussie women team nobody in every country takes women cricket seriously.  Again no offense but the cold hard facts.  Unless u don't win something u won't be prioritized. 

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3 hours ago, Lone Wolf said:

Lol unless women's team wins something they will be treated as secondary level no offence though.  NZ women or WI women or hell SA women don't complain about being given less attention.  In fact except maybe Aussie women team nobody in every country takes women cricket seriously.  Again no offense but the cold hard facts.  Unless u don't win something u won't be prioritized. 

How about giving them a chance to win by providing the opportunities to play and facilities available to men’s team?

 

BCCI may be richest, but certainly lacks planning when it comes to women’s cricket. Look at Eng and Australia and see how we are letting down the women. Shame.

 

 

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10 hours ago, Adi_91 said:

How about giving them a chance to win by providing the opportunities to play and facilities available to men’s team?

 

BCCI may be richest, but certainly lacks planning when it comes to women’s cricket. Look at Eng and Australia and see how we are letting down the women. Shame.

 

 

WI women team won T20 WC what better facilities they are getting?  The fact is women team needs a moment like 1983 till then nobody in country would take them seriously.  You gotta work with what u have. 

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1 hour ago, Lone Wolf said:

WI women team won T20 WC what better facilities they are getting?  The fact is women team needs a moment like 1983 till then nobody in country would take them seriously.  You gotta work with what u have. 

Jsut because we were thrash in 1983 doesn't mean we repeat the same mistakes. We have the money and power today. This is the same bullshit mentality which does not allow us to progress. We are a reactionary nation instead of being proactive. Instead of developing people and sports we want people to be held back

 

The reason china,america etc leads Olympics is because they invested money and years in training peoole and not wait till they proved themselves 

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Misogyny, nothing else, in every sphere of life in India. Women have been saving us from embarrassment humiliation in global sports meets for quite some time, be it badminton, football, boxing, athletics, gymnastics, chess (will get more pronounced as Anand gets older...at least this decade) or take Rio 2016 as example (otherwise an anda was waiting taking us back to 1992 Barcelona days). Eves have been making excellent progress in hockey and cricket despite the system and not because of it....one can only imagine what they would achieve if they are backed like Eng/Aus ladies, even 50% of that. They have made the finals in last 2 ICC events and came so close to being crowned world champs in Eng...men achieved a similar feat when Manmohan was still in power. At the very least BCCI owes an explanation, how come IPL is ok in UAE but not our women's tour to England?

 

Even on this forum we need more threads and posts related to women's cricket. We could open a subforum for women's cricket (let admins take that call) even if it means less activity, all of us have to change our attitude. Tennis is one sport where equality (prize money, respect, fame, media attention, professionalism etc.) has more or less been achieved and people in general have as much interest in WTA as ATP....only Big 3 is keeping ATP ahead, wait till they retire. Cricket must aspire to come close to tennis in this regard, change will be incremental but has to start somewhere. And Indian women's cricket in particular, we must do better. 

Edited by Gollum

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4 hours ago, New guy said:

Jsut because we were thrash in 1983 doesn't mean we repeat the same mistakes. We have the money and power today. This is the same bullshit mentality which does not allow us to progress. We are a reactionary nation instead of being proactive. Instead of developing people and sports we want people to be held back

 

The reason china,america etc leads Olympics is because they invested money and years in training peoole and not wait till they proved themselves 

Yes that we are but seriously things don't change in this country like what you are mentioning.  BCCI is all about $$.  I guess they don't  see profit in women's team.  Just like the men's team had to earn everything from scratch.  They gotta do it as well.  Make no mistake I'd happy if BCCI encourages women cricket more but I don't see any changes happening coz apparently nobody in the country cares much.  Women are doing better in other sports for India already.  Anyways India is not a sports oriented country.  Comparison to Australia is flawed as they are the most sporty countries around. 

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6 minutes ago, Lone Wolf said:

Yes that we are but seriously things don't change in this country like what you are mentioning.  BCCI is all about $$.  I guess they don't  see profit in women's team.  Just like the men's team had to earn everything from scratch.  They gotta do it as well.  Make no mistake I'd happy if BCCI encourages women cricket more but I don't see any changes happening coz apparently nobody in the country cares much.  Women are doing better in other sports for India already.  Anyways India is not a sports oriented country.  Comparison to Australia is flawed as they are the most sporty countries around. 

India can sometimes appear to be a wannabe nation. Australia and other first world nations except for US have strong social welfare programs where unemployed do not need to worry about a place to stay or food to eat, so these countries have the flexibility to experiment with unconventional stuff. 

India has no social welfare system, so naturally people will have a mindset of expecting a guaranteed return on investment.

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3 hours ago, Lone Wolf said:

Yes that we are but seriously things don't change in this country like what you are mentioning.  BCCI is all about $$.  I guess they don't  see profit in women's team.  Just like the men's team had to earn everything from scratch.  They gotta do it as well.  Make no mistake I'd happy if BCCI encourages women cricket more but I don't see any changes happening coz apparently nobody in the country cares much.  Women are doing better in other sports for India already.  Anyways India is not a sports oriented country.  Comparison to Australia is flawed as they are the most sporty countries around. 

Again, who knows what the financial potential of women’s cricket is until you promote it? Why not a start a women’s IPL, if not a full fledged one, at least a 2 week tournament?

 

I think you seriously need to see the change around. PV Sindhu’s Gold Medal bout was watched by millions in Rio 2016. The Women’s World Cup Final in 2017 had plenty of viewers waiting for 1983 moment.  The team is now one of the top ranked sides in the world. There is enough to suggest that we are at the cusp of a turnaround moment. This is the time to invest in Women power, be it sports or other fields. 

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On Sun Jul 26 2020 at 11:19 PM, Adi_91 said:

Again, who knows what the financial potential of women’s cricket is until you promote it? Why not a start a women’s IPL, if not a full fledged one, at least a 2 week tournament?

 

I think you seriously need to see the change around. PV Sindhu’s Gold Medal bout was watched by millions in Rio 2016. The Women’s World Cup Final in 2017 had plenty of viewers waiting for 1983 moment.  The team is now one of the top ranked sides in the world. There is enough to suggest that we are at the cusp of a turnaround moment. This is the time to invest in Women power, be it sports or other fields. 

Women's IPl is as of now a pipe dream.  2007 WC win triggered men's IPL.  If we had somehow managed to win the WWT20 this time BCCI might've accelerated & turned women's IPL a reality.  

As far as investment is concerned I think a women's IPl would've no worries.  As of now we need to improve our domestic set up for women's so that more quality players can turn up..  This is the methodological way that worked with our Men's team much earlier.  However a women's IPl may also see us unearth raw talents like Pakistan does who don't have much domestic experience but are seriously good.  So yes there is promise.  But BCCI is reluctant for some reason. 

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