Senior woman cricketer Mithali Raj took to Twitter to express her disappointment over the recent incidents following her omission from the team during the recently-concluded World T20 in the Caribbean. Calling it the darkest day of her life, Mithali tweeted, “I’m deeply saddened & hurt by the aspersions cast on me. My commitment to the game & 20yrs of playing for my country. The hard work, sweat, in vain.”
“Today, my patriotism doubted, my skill set questioned & all the mud slinging- it’s the darkest day of my life. May god give strength,” she added.
According to media reports, Ramesh Powar, the coach of the India women’s team for the ICC Women’s World T20, in a 10-page report to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) officials, accused Mithali Raj of not playing for the team and chasing after “own milestones” during the recently concluded World T20 tournament.
“Mithali Raj – a senior player in the team. Minimum inputs in team meetings not a single word of appreciation after finishing at the top of the table. Could not understand & adapt to team plan. Ignored her role and batted for own milestones. Lack of keeping the momentum going which was putting extra pressure on other batters,” he wrote.
Earlier, Mithali had accused BCCI Committee of Administrators (CoA) member and former player Diana Edulji of bias after she was dropped from for the semi-final against England in the ICC Women’s World T20. She had also slammed coach Ramesh Powar for humiliating her.
In a letter to the BCCI, she wrote, “To put things in perspective, I have always reposed faith in Diana Edulji and have always respected her and her position as a member of the COA. Never did I think she will use her position against me, more after hearing what all I had to go through in the Caribbean as I had spoken to her about it.”
She also narrated a series of instances where she had felt slighted by the coach. “My issues with the coach started immediately as we landed in the West Indies. At first there were small signs that his behaviour towards me was unfair and discriminatory. For instance, walking off if I am sitting anywhere around, watching in the nets when others bat but choosing to walk away when I am batting in nets, if I try to go up to him to talk to start looking into his phone and keep walking. It was embarrassing and very evident to everyone that I was being humiliated. Yet I never lost my cool,” she said.