Shanta prepares to meet the challenge

Shanta prepares to meet the challenge

'I will need to analyse everything'

Former Indian women’s cricket team skipper Shanta Rangaswamy was elected chairman of the women’s selection committee at BCCI’s Annual General Meeting on Sunday, and the Bangalorean was pleasantly surprised with the Board’s decision.

Shanta, who led the Indian women’s team in the 70s and the 80s, formerly held the post in 2003 and was at helm for three years before women’s cricket came under BCCI’s wing in 2006. She also coached the senior women’s side in 2008 before taking a sabbatical from the sport.

“I wanted to focus on my career as something other than a cricketer so I chose to take a break and work at the bank. I realised that I could not devote enough time to my career, I even stopped commentating,” the batting all-rounder, who is the General Manager of the Recovery Wing in Canara Bank, said on Monday.

The Indian women’s team was at one point a force to reckon with but it has been reduced to a pale shadow, and Shanta thought the problem lay at the grassroots level.
“We finished runners-up in the 2005 World Cup and in 2012 we didn’t even qualify. Our performance levels have dropped drastically and I think it is because we have not been able to harness all the talent that is available in the country.”

Having been named the chairman out of the blue, the 59-year-old was not sure of what is in store for her but she was sure of doing a good job with the knowledge she has. “These are still early days. I am not sure of what the situation is but I will be briefed soon.’’

“I will need to analyse everything and then begin work. I want to get to the root-cause of this (lack of performance) and if I could identify that then I could also implement remedial measures. I am not talking as just a selector but also as a well-wisher of women’s cricket. I could then point out what needs to be done,” she said.