Mithali Raj is ‘deeply saddened and hurt’ after legendary player’s patriotism questioned

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India’s legendary woman cricketer Mithali Raj on Thursday expressed her deep pain and anguish for trolls questioning her patriotism after she wrote an explosive letter to the BCCI.

Mithali Raj

Taking to Twitter, the highest run scorer in the history of women’s cricket wrote, “I’m deeply saddened & hurt by the aspersions cast on me. My commitment to the game & 20 yrs of playing for my country.The hard work, sweat, in vain. Today, my patriotism doubted, my skill set questioned & all the mud slinging- it’s the darkest day of my life. May god give strength.”

Mithali had shot off an explosive email to the BCCI complaining about humiliation meted out to her by the team’s coach Ramesh Powar. This was after the team management had decided to exclude her from the T20 World Cup semi-final match against England. This despite the fact that she had scored two back-to-back 50s in the previous two matches against Ireland and Pakistan respectively. India was knocked out of the World Cup after losing to England by 8 wickets.

Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar on Wednesday had thrown his support behind Mithali saying that he was sorry for the ace cricketer.

Gavaskar had told India Today, “I feel sorry for Mithali. She has a very good point. She has served Indian cricket for 20 years. She scored runs, she won player of the match in both matches (she played at the World T20).”

Gavaskar had further said, “She was injured for one game but fit for the next game. Just convert this situation into the men’s game. If you had a Virat Kohli who was injured for one game and then is fit for the knockout, will you leave him out? You have to pick your best player for the knockouts. You needed the experience and expertise of Mithali Raj.”

Powar was grilled by the BCCI on Wednesday on the reason why Mithali was left out of the semi-final. He reportedly said in his defence that her strike-rate wasn’t impressive. The board officials then asked him if Mithali’s strike rate in the previous two matches had become an issue. Powar was left stuck for an answer, said a source in the board.

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