3 cheers to Mithali for record breaking feat

Written by: Mamatha Maben
Published: Monday, August 26, 2002, 19:34 [IST]
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The Indian team has just returned from a pretty disastrous tour of England where it put up a poor show in the triangular series involving New Zealand and host England. However India had some cheer at the end of the tour when Mithali Raj created history with a world record score of 214, which in turn enabled India to record its highest Test score of 467. Mithali Raj's record-breaking effort has fetched her a lot of publicity back home and duly so. It was a mammoth effort from her and coming at a time when she had a string of poor performances behind her back, it was doubly creditably.

I being a member of that touring squad know how much the team looks up to her and since she was not able to deliver for most part of the tour, she must have been feeling low and miserable.

We all knew she had class and it was a matter of time before she got among the runs but coming the way it did was like the proverbial lull before the storm. It was an innings of intense concentration, fierce determination and an exhibition of the finest stroke play.

She basically did it for her team because she knew once she was set, she had to dig in deep as the team was still in troubled waters. Even after her hundred she knew she had to carry on otherwise we could still land in trouble since we were playing last on that wicket.

So she never let up, hardly played a loose shot and stuck to her task of grafting the runs and waited for the bad balls to dispatch them to the boundary. In the process she steadily consolidated her score and she found an able and willing partner in Jhulan Goswami, who played a brilliant and patient innings of 62 runs facing 196 balls - the pair added 157 runs for the seventh wicket which by itself was another record.

Eventually towards the end of the day records started tumbling and there was cheer after cheer in the Indian dressing room. A quite and unassuming character, Mithali Raj has put in loads and loads of effort and to see her set this record only brought joy and satisfaction amongst her teammates.

She deserves very bit of praise and accolade coming her way and the Indian fans wish her a bright and prosperous future and hope that she will be able to bring further glory to our nation. Three cheers to Mithali Raj...!


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