Mithali Raj

Born on 3rd December 1982 in Jodhpur, Rajasthan, is India Test, ODI and T20I captain, Mithali Raj and the best player India has produced.

Playing from the age of ten, Mithali Raj’s domestic career began at sixteen, playing for Air India. In the same year her international debut, an ODI against Ireland where she scored a not out century (114*). It was an emphatic announcement that this teenage prodigy from Rajasthan could bat and she has dominated the ODI scene for two decades.

A Test debut against England in 2001/2 was less glorious, Mithali scoring a duck at Lucknow. A half century against South Africa in the same season, then a major breakthrough against England in 2002. In the second Test, at Taunton, Mithali Raj scored 214 runs in a marathon knock of 598 minutes. It remains the second highest score in the history of women’s Test cricket.

In twelve Test matches, Mithali has scored 699 runs at an average of 43.68. She has captained India in eight Tests, winning three. It makes her the most successful Test captain India has produced.

The numbers are even better when we look at ODI cricket. Mithali has played 220 matches, scoring 7391 runs, the highest of anyone in this format. Next best is England’s Charlotte Edwards with 5992. Mithali’s highest score is 125 not out – one of seven centuries. She has scored 59 half centuries on top of that and her average is 51.32. To average over fifty over such a long period of time is truly remarkable.

She has been India’s ODI captain since 2003, leading the team in 132 matches, winning 82 of those, to be India’s most successful women’s ODI captain.

In 89 T20 matches (of which she captained 32) Mithali has scored 2364 runs at 37.52 with a high score of 97 not out and 17 half centuries. It is safe to say that Mithali Raj is the best player produced by India in the history of women’s cricket.

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