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Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana: Cricketing Marvel Who Lead RCB to their Maiden IPL Title in WPL 2024

Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana In the illustrious tapestry of cricketing history, amidst the roar of the crowds and the echo of leather on willow, few stories captivate the imagination quite like that of Smriti Mandhana.

Born into the cricketing heartland of Mumbai, her journey from the bustling streets of the city to the hallowed grounds of international cricket is a testament to the power of talent, perseverance, and unwavering determination. With each stroke of the bat and every milestone achieved, Mandhana has etched her name in the annals of cricketing lore, emerging as a beacon of inspiration for aspiring cricketers around the globe.

Yet, amidst her many triumphs, perhaps none shine brighter than her leadership in guiding the Royal Challengers Bangalore [RCB] to a glorious victory in the 2024 season of Women's Premier League [WPL 2024].

Join us as we unravel the inspiring story of this cricketing sensation - Smriti Mandhana:

Discovering the Passion for Cricket:
Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana
In the bustling streets of Mumbai, cricket wasn't just a sport; it was a way of life. For young Smriti Mandhana, born into a family where cricket conversations were as common as morning tea, the allure of the game was irresistible. Inspired by her father's tales of district-level cricket and her brother's exploits on the field, Smriti's fascination with the game bloomed. Every weekend, she'd tag along with her brother to watch him play in local tournaments, her eyes glued to every shot, every catch. It was in those moments that she knew cricket wasn't just a game – it was her destiny waiting to unfold.

Early Years in Sangli:

As the Mandhana family moved to Sangli, a small town in Maharashtra, Smriti's cricketing journey took a definitive turn. Amidst the serene backdrop of Sangli's cricket grounds, she found her sanctuary. Under the watchful eyes of her father, who patiently pitched balls at her during countless practice sessions, Smriti's talent began to blossom. But it wasn't just about perfecting her cover drives or mastering her bowling action; it was about falling in love with the rhythm of the game, the camaraderie of the team, and the thrill of competition.

From Local Tournaments to International Debut:
Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana
As Smriti's skill set expanded, so did her ambitions. At just nine years old, she was already making waves in the Maharashtra U-15 team, her elegant stroke play turning heads and raising eyebrows. With each match, each tournament, she grew stronger, more confident. By the time she earned a coveted spot in the U-19 state team at the tender age of 11, it was clear that Smriti Mandhana wasn't just another talented cricketer – she was a force to be reckoned with.

In 2013, during an Inter-State Under-19 one-day competition, she smashed an unbeaten 224 off just 150 balls against Gujarat, becoming the first Indian woman to score a double hundred in a 50-over cricket match at any level. Her innings were a testament to her skill, determination, and unwavering focus.

The Grand Debut at the International Stage:

In April 2013, at just 16 years old, Smriti Mandhana marked her international debut for India in a T20 match against Bangladesh at Vadodara. Clad in the iconic blue jersey, she exuded a blend of nerves and excitement as she stepped onto the field, poised to make her mark on the international stage.

In a dazzling display of skill and composure, Mandhana announced her arrival with a notable performance. She emerged as India’s highest scorer in her debut match, smashing an impressive 39 runs off 36 balls. Her innings played a crucial role in securing a 10-run victory for India, clinching the bilateral series 3-0.

Making History:

Mandhana continued to dazzle with her batting prowess, earning several awards for her exceptional contributions. Notably, her maiden international century against Australia in Hobart in 2016 remains etched in cricketing history. Scoring 102 runs from 109 balls, Mandhana's sublime innings not only propelled India to victory but also earned her widespread acclaim as a rising talent in women's cricket.

Furthermore, her stellar performances in the 2017 ICC Women's World Cup solidified her reputation as a cricketing sensation. Emerging as one of the tournament's top run-scorers, she played a crucial role in guiding India to the finals.

Smriti Mandhana's exceptional performances in One Day Internationals (ODIs) during 2018 earned her the title of ODI Player of the Year, highlighting her consistency and dominance in the format.

Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana Smriti Mandhana has set several records in Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is), including being the fastest Indian woman to score 1,000 runs and the youngest Indian to score a century in Women’s T20 Internationals.

Beyond the international arena, Mandhana represented various franchises in domestic and franchise tournaments, including Western Storm and Brisbane Heat, further showcasing her versatility and adaptability as a cricketer.

Awards and Accolades:

Smriti Mandhana's contributions to cricket have not gone unnoticed. Here are some of her most important achievements:

- ICC Women's Cricketer of the Year (2018)

- Arjuna Award recipient (2018)

- Wisden Leading Women’s Cricketer in the World (2019)

- Joint-fastest T20 50 in women’s cricket (with Sophie Devine, 18 balls)

- Fastest T20I 50 by an Indian woman (23 balls)

- Third Indian woman to score 2,000 runs in T20I cricket

- Sixth Indian woman to score 2,000 runs in ODI cricket

- First cricketer to score 10 consecutive 50-plus scores while chasing in ODI cricket

- First Indian women’s cricketer to score an ODI and Test century in Australia

- First Indian woman to score a double century in 50-over cricket

- Commonwealth Games 2022 silver medal winner

- Asian Games 2023 gold medal winner

A Triumph in the Women's Premier League (2024)

In the annals of Smriti Mandhana's illustrious career, the year 2024 will forever stand out as a testament to her leadership and prowess on the cricket field. It was the year she embarked on a new journey in the Women's Premier League (WPL), donning the colors of the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB).

Inspiring Story of Smriti Mandhana Throughout the WPL season, Smriti Mandhana led by example, showcasing her resilience and tenacity in the face of adversity. From thrilling victories to hard-fought battles, every match was a testament to her unwavering commitment to excellence. With each innings, Mandhana inspired her teammates to push the boundaries and strive for greatness, laying the foundation for RCB's success in the tournament.

As the WPL season reached its climax, all eyes were on the WPL 2024 title match, where RCB faced off against Delhi Capitals. Smriti Mandhana led the team to a historic triumph in the 1st season of WPL [WPL 2024].

A Legacy of Leadership and Excellence

As Smriti Mandhana lifted the IPL 2024 trophy in triumph, she cemented her status as one of the most influential leaders in women's cricket. Her journey from debutant to champion exemplifies the values of determination, perseverance, and leadership that define her illustrious career.

As Smriti Mandhana's journey continues, the future of Indian cricket looks brighter than ever. With her at the helm, guiding the next generation of cricketers towards greatness, the possibilities are endless. Whether she's leading her team to victory on the field or inspiring millions off it, Smriti Mandhana's legacy is secure – a testament to the power of passion, perseverance, and the pursuit of excellence in the game she loves.

Image Credits:

Image 1,4,5: Smriti Mandhana on X
Image 2,3: BCCI on X


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Any facts, figures or references stated here are made by the author & don't reflect the endorsement of iU at all times unless otherwise drafted by official staff at iU. This article was first published here on 25th March 2024.

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