Karnataka girls in Indian cricket team

Karnataka girls in Indian cricket team

Along with senior left-arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad, the number of Karnataka players in the team is now three

Prathyusha Challaru

Karnataka girls Prathyusha Challaru and Monica Patel have broken into the Indian senior women’s ODI and T20I teams that will take on South Africa in Lucknow from March 7-23.

Along with senior left-arm spinner Rajeshwari Gayakwad, the number of Karnataka players in the team is now three while middle-order batter Veda Krishnamurthy’s expected exclusion was a bit of a dampener amid cheer.

The other big names to be shown the door are all-rounder Shikha Pandey, wicketkeeper Taniya Bhatia, Ekta Bisht and Anuja Patil. 

The 22-member squad will play five ODIs and three T20Is.

The ODI team will be led by veteran Mithali Raj while opener Harmanpreet Kaur will captain the T20 side. 

While the 23-year-old Prathyusha is a leg-spinner, Monica, 21, is a left-handed medium pacer from Herons Cricket Club. The two girls were mentored by club’s K Muralidhar in their initial days. Interestingly, Rajeshwari is also a product of Herons CC.

“I am elated by the news of my inclusion,” Prathyusha told DH. “I began playing cricket as a 10-year-old kid and always dreamt of representing the country. Having led the Karnataka side in the U-19 and U-23 tournaments, this challenge of a mammoth scale is an experience I am waiting for,” said Prathyusha.

The squad for ODI series: Mithali Raj (Capt), Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues, Punam Raut, Priya Punia, Yastika Bhatia, Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), D Hemalatha, Deepti Sharma, Sushma Verma (wicket-keeper), Swetha Verma (wicket-keeper), Radha Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Jhulan Goswami, Mansi Joshi, Poonam Yadav, C Prathyusha, Monica Patel.

T20I squad: Harmanpreet Kaur (Capt), Smriti Mandhana (vice-captain), Shafali Verma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Richa Ghosh, Harleen Deol, Sushma Verma (wicket-keeper), Nuzhat Parveen (wicket-keeper), Ayushi Soni, Arundhati Reddy, Radha Yadav, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Yadav, Mansi Joshi, Monica Patel, C Prathyusha and Simran Bahadur.

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