2022 Women’s World Cup: Renuka Singh, the promising Railways pacer, who has big shoes to put on

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Hailing from a small village in Shimla, Renuka Singh had an abiding interest in cricket, an interest she believes she developed from her father, who was an avid follower of the game. was just three years old, but his love for cricket – so deep that he named his son Vinod after former cricketer Vinod Kambli, whom he endlessly admired – left a strong impression on the youngster. Renuka, who took to the sportswoman.

While Renuka used to play cricket in her village, it only became something more serious when her uncle saw her playing and insisted that Renuka enroll in the HPCA residential academy. , created by the former president of the BCCI, Anurag Thakur. She thrived there with proper training and support from coach Pawan Sen.

Pacer Renuka Singh made his India ODI debut recently against New Zealand. Image: Twitter/@ICC

She improved her fitness, developed control of her line and length and rose through the ranks to play for Himachal Pradesh’s Under-16 and Under-19 teams, making an impression at every level . At Under-19 level, she scored a hat-trick against the Karnataka side in a performance that instilled a lot of confidence in her.

Her highlight, however, came in 2018-19 when she finished the Senior Women’s One Day Trophy with 21 wickets. Two years later, she would play the final of the same tournament and lead her team to a win over Karnataka with a 4/14 spell.

The head coach of the Railways team, Nooshin Al Khadeer, a former Indian player said in an interview with The new Indian Express that Renuka was inconsistent when she first arrived in the setup in 2018, but quickly turned into a deadly pacemaker.

“She’s very different from other bowlers. Her aggressiveness is her composure. She understands things, doesn’t get jerked around when she’s hit for a boundary, because she knows she can make a comeback,” Nooshin said.

Her 21 wickets in the Senior Women’s One Day Trophy served as her stepping stone into the Indian A Team. India B, Renuka continued its steady rise.

She was first called up to the national team for the 2021 Tour of Australia, where she impressed in the T20Is with her control. Subsequently, she replaced senior fast bowler Shikha Pandey in the ODI World Cup squad for New Zealand and will likely be the third point guard, should India choose three, behind Jhulan Goswami and Pooja Vastrakar.

Renuka got a taste of ODI action in the series against New Zealand, picking up wickets from Sophie Devine and Frances Mackay in the fourth ODI at Queenstown. At the ODI World Cup, Renuka would be looking to fulfill the dreams of his father, who wanted his children to play sports and be the pride of the country.

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