Bowled Over: Huge turnout for women’s cricket
In a major first, women’s cricket in Qatar took a historic step forward as nearly 150 females turned out for trails conducted by the Qatar Cricket Association (QCA).
Braving wet and cold weather at West bay Area, the 150 cricket hopefuls went through their paces, much to the delight of QCA officials keen to develop women’s cricket.
And vying for a place in the Qatar women’s team were players as young as nine years and some in their 30’s and hailing from different fields school students, housewives and employed people.
But the chunk of the players who had lined up to have a bowl or to bat at West Bay were girl students from various schools in Qatar and hailing mainly from Asian countries of India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and even one girl from Philippines.
The Qatar Cricket Association women development committee members were upbeat over the overwhelming response that the first ever camp for women cricket players has got in Qatar.
“With rains on Friday and with cold and chilly weather conditions prevailing today, we were not sure about the turnout. But in the end, the girls have braved the weather conditions for the greater love of the game,” said Maryam Gul Khan, Women Cricket Coordinator at QCA.
“We are excepting the number to increase the number to increase in the coming days as some people preferred to stay back today and will turn up tomorrow, going by the phone calls we have received so far,” She added.
And QCA’s plan of action in the coming days would revolve around pruning the probable list to a manageable one.
“We will shortlist the girls and form three teams who will train every Saturday under our coaches till the end of April,” said Aruna De Silva, National Coach and held of the Women’s Cricket Development Programme at QCA.
Upcoming tennis player, 11-year old Lizera Vaz from DPS-MIS School, was one of the several students who vied for a place in the team.
There were others like teacher Latha Dakhishina Murthy who was upbeat to roll her arm to have a bowl, while Ushas Andrews was ecstatic in playing the game again after a gap of 14 years.
“I am thrilled to be among the crowd and ready for the challenges of the game having last donned colors of Kerala University as a wicketkeeper batswoman. Hopefully we will have a good, strong team in the near future,” said Andrews.
QCA action plan for women cricket kicked off in December last year with the formation of a ten member Women Development Committee.