One of the finest players in Women’s cricket, Mithali Raj celebrates her 37th birthday on Tuesday. Born on December 3, 1982, Mithali is a prolific right-handed batswoman and her record in international cricket speaks volume of his capabilities. In fact, the batting maestro is the highest run-scorer in Women’s ODIs. She is also the only cricketer to have registered seven consecutive fifties in ODIs. Along with her blitz with the bat, the veteran is also a proven leader as she also has captained India for a long period of the time. Mithali Raj Gives Befitting Reply to a Fan Who Slammed the Star Cricketer Over Language Preference.
The Jodhpur-born cricketer made her debut way in June 1999 and still hasn’t lost her sheen after spending over two decades in international cricket. Speaking of her records, the star batswoman has 6888 runs from 209 ODIs which are most for any women cricketer. She also has 663 runs in 10 Tests to go with 2364 in 89 T20I matches. Anyone could boast of these numbers and many more records could also be added in the list. So, on the occasion of the star batswoman’s 37th birthday, let’s look at five of her performances in international cricket. Mithali Raj, Sachin Tendulkar & Other Indian Cricketing Legends Take Lap of Honour at Eden Gardens in Kolkata (Watch Video).
214 Against England in Taunton
The right-handed batswoman looked at her prime in the second Test of India's Women 2002 Tour of England where she scored a brilliant-double ton. In reply of England's 329 runs in the first innings, Raj came into bat when her reeling at 45/2. However, she valiantly faced the English pacers and went online to play a gem of an innings. Her heroics guided India to 467 runs. Nevertheless, the hosts made a notable comeback and the match was tied.
103* Against Pakistan in Cuttack
A lot was in stakes when India faced Pakistan in the seventh-place play-off match of ICC Women's World Cup 2013. India's batting line-up collapsed while chasing a mediocre target of 193 in the first innings. The total wasn't a big one, however, the likes of Harmanpreet Kaur and Poonam Raut were back in the hits and the mantle of run-scoring was again on Raj. She didn't disappoint her fans and scored a splendid century which helped her team register a win by six wickets.
109 Against New Zealand in Derby
The Indian skipper enjoyed a great run in the ICC Women's World Cup 2017. However, her best performance came against New Zealand in the 27th match of the tournament. On the tough batting conditions of Derby, the batswoman displayed great composure and went on to complete a brilliant ton. She scored 109 runs in total and powered India to a score of 265 in the first innings which proved to be too much for the Kiwis as they lost the match by 186 runs.
125* Against Sri Lanka in Katunayake
This knock by the Indian skipper will certainly go down as one of the greatest efforts in a losing cause. In the third ODI of India Women's 2018 Tour of Sri Lanka, the visitors' top-order was rattled by the Sri Lankan bowlers. However, the veteran batswoman came to India's rescue and guided her side to safety. Despite not getting much support from another end, Raj got going and she smashed a brilliant ton. She guided her side to 253 in the first innings. Unfortunately, her brilliance went in vain as India lost the match by three wickets.
97* Against Malaysia in Kuala Lumpur
Raj opened the innings for India in the opening match of the 2018 Women's T20 Asia Cup. After losing opener Smriti Mandhana early in the innings, the skipper used all her experience and brought back India's innings back on track. She played a calculated knock and also scored runs at a fairly rapid rate. She did fell three runs short of her century but guided her side to a score of 169 in the first innings which proved to be too much for the Malaysians as they were bundled out for 27 runs and subsequently lost the match by 142 runs.
The right-handed batswoman bid adieu to the shortest format of the game in 2018 and now is fully focusing on the ICC Women's Cricket World Cup 2021. With a lot of T20 cricket being played in the upcoming days, Raj will get a lot of time off the field and the birthday girl will want to all utilize the team by preparing for the 2021 Women's World Cup.