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Mithali Raj Announces Retirement From T20Is, To Focus on 2021 World Cup

Veteran India player Mithali Raj has called it a day on her T20I career on Tuesday,a BCCI release stated. Former India T20I captain, Raj had led India in 32 T20Is including the three Women’s WT20 World Cups in 2012 (Sri Lanka), 2014 (Bangladesh) and 2016 (India).

Cricketnext Staff |September 4, 2019, 9:04 AM IST
Mithali Raj Announces Retirement From T20Is, To Focus on 2021 World Cup

Veteran India player Mithali Raj has called it a day on her illustrious T20I career on Tuesday, a BCCI release stated. Former T20I skipper Mithali appeared in 89 T20Is, in which she scored 2364 runs at a healthy average of 37.52.

Her last outing in the format was this year in March against England at Guwahati, where she scored 30 from 32 deliveries.

“After representing India in T20 internationals since 2006, I wish to retire from T20Is to focus my energies on readying myself for the 2021 One Day World Cup. It remains my dream to win a World Cup for my country and I want to give it my best. I thank the BCCI for their continuous support and wish the Indian T20 team good luck as they prepare for the home series against South Africa Women,” said Mithali.

The 36-year-old was the India's highest run-getter in the format and the first to achieve the milestone of 2000 runs. Not only that, her 89 outings are the second-most by an Indian, only surpassed by current skipper Harmanpreet Kaur (96).

Mithali had led India in 32 T20Is including the three Women’s WT20 World Cups in 2012 (Sri Lanka), 2014 (Bangladesh) and 2016 (India). Unfortunately in all these editions India was knocked out in the first round itself.

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As far as the 2018 edition of the World Cup is concerned, she had useful contributions with the bat, scoring 56 off 47 balls against Pakistan, and 51 against Ireland.

Despite her stellar performances, she was controversially left out of the all-important semi-final against England, that India lost by eight wickets. The batting crumbled under pressure and weren't able to put up a fight against the opposition.

After the match reports of a rift between Mithali & skipper Harmanpreet had started surfacing. The latter defended her decision said that the management did not want to tinker with the winning combination from the previous match against Australia.

Mithali's manager Annisha Gupta went to the extent of calling Harmanpreet, a “manipulative, lying, immature, undeserving captain”. After the entire episode, Mithali went on to play four more T20Is for the country.

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