Meet Richa Ghosh, the new ‘Girl in Blue’

Richa Ghosh is the surprise package in the Indian team for the women's T20 World Cup. She is also one of the most complete packages you can have in cricket.

Richa Ghosh with Bengal's senior women's team coach Shib Shankar Paul (left).   -  CAB Media

Richa Ghosh is the surprise package in the Indian team for the women's T20 World Cup. She is also one of the most complete packages you can have in cricket.

The 16-year-old can bat, keep wickets and bowl medium-pace.

"I know it is unusual for a player to be both a ’keeper and a bowler, but I don't want to stop doing either," Richa told Sportstar shortly before leaving for Australia, where the World Cup will kick off on February 21. Before that, India will be playing a tri-series involving the host and England.

Richa, who belongs to Siliguri, said there have been occasions when she has kept wickets as well as bowled in the same match.

"There have been tournaments in which I would be the 'keeper in one match and bowler in the next," she said. "I know my role is primarily that of a batter. And I like to play aggressively."

READ: Team India 'covering all bases', says coach W.V. Raman

An admirer of Sachin Tendulkar and M.S. Dhoni, she has high regard for Harmanpreet Kaur, India's captain at the T20 World Cup.

"I also like Shafali Verma’s batting," she said. "It's great that there are a few other teenagers in the World Cup team like Jemimah Rodrigues and Radha Yadav."

With plenty of experience in the form of Harmanpreet, Smriti Mandhana, Deepti Sharma and Poonam Yadav, she feels India has the team to win the trophy. "My dream is for India to win the World Cup and to make my own contribution.”

She, however, wasn't quite expecting to be on the flight to Australia. "I was almost shocked when I came to know that I had made it to the team, though I had done well enough at the Women's Challenger Trophy at Cuttack recently," she said.

Good progress

"Playing for India has always been my goal, ever since I became serious about cricket, after I was introduced to the sport by my father."

She used to be the only girl in the local club at Siliguri then. "But that has changed," she said. "Now many girls play cricket. The live telecast of women's matches and the extensive coverage in newspapers and online have all helped," she said.

Support Sportstar


Dear Reader,

Support our journalism — where text and pictures intermingle so seamlessly — and help us scale up your experience as the world changes around us. Your contribution is vital to our brand of uninfluenced, boots-on-the-ground reportage that’s worth your while. Clickbait sensationalism is not for us, but editorial independence is — we owe it to you.

  Dugout videos