Former COA Vinod Rai in his book ‘Not Just a Nightwatchman – My Innings in the BCCI’ has spoken about various issues of Indian cricket during his time with BCCI. A few issues went down in history being the most controversial chapters in Indian cricket in both men’s and women’s cricket.
Rai has revealed various secrets and stories in his book which were unheard of for so long. One of them was the Mithali Raj-Ramesh Powar spat during the 2018 T20 World Cup. A controversy broke out in the 2018 edition of the Women’s T20 World Cup when during the semi-final she faced an ax in the semi-final against England. As it turned out India lost the game and was knocked out of the tournament.
Mithali Raj Was Kept In The Dark: Vinod Rai
Rai in his book wrote that Mithali was anguished by how Powar treated her in the game. She said that more than he being benched in the semi-final she felt insulted and disrespected.
” The two players — Mithali (Raj) and Harmanpreet (Kaur) — had separate meetings with Rahul Johri (BCCI CEO) and Saba Karim (GM, cricket operations). (Ramesh) Powar, the coach, also met with these officials. Mithali and Powar were advised to report to the CoA with written statements… Mithali and Powar both submitted their version of the incidents that took place in the West Indies (T20 World Cup semifinal)” Rai wrote in his book.
He further wrote what Ramesh Powar said on dropping Mithali Raj from such a crucial game against England. Rai said Powar felt Mithali’s lack of form had prompted the management to drop her for the semi-final.
“He maintained that it was due to her poor strike rate that the team management had decided to drop her for the semi-final game and retain the winning combination of the last match” Rai wrote in his book.
Mithali Raj in his explanation further said that she had no problems with Harmanpreet Kaur. However, she added that she was kept in the dark regarding her exclusion from the semi-final against England and the way she was dropped from the team without prior notice was what hurt her the most.
Also Read: It’s Time Women’s Cricket Emerges From Its Legacy Of Poor Decision Making: Anjum Chopra
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