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Women's Cricket

Women's ODI World Cup captains of India — Where are they now?

The Indian women's cricket team has had the good fortune of being led by exemplary captains at the World Cup. The Bridge takes a look at where the legends are now.

Diana Edulji Mithali Raj Shantha Rangaswamy ODI World Cup captain history

Diana Edulji (left), Mithali Raj (centre) and Shantha Rangaswamy - former ODI World Cup captains of Indian women's cricket team


Sohinee Basu

Updated: 2 March 2022 3:10 PM GMT

The Indian women's cricket team has always been known to make a statement with the willow and with every World Cup, the Women in Blue stand out with their performance, their spirit, their grit and their determination that continue to inspire generations of budding cricketers.

Behind the success of the Indian women's cricket team at the World Cup's - twice in which they have been runners-up, lies the leadership skills of their able captains, who guided the team from the front foot.

With the 2022 ICC Women's Cricket World Cup knocking on the door which will mark India's 10th appearance at the prestigious tournament, The Bridge takes a look at all the inspiring women who captained the Women in Blue at the ODI World Cup's since India made its debut in 1978.

1. Diana Edulji - 1978 and 1993 World Cup Captain

Diana Edulji - India's World Cup debut captain

An avid sportswoman, Diana Edulji fiddled plenty with basketball and table tennis before settling on cricket, honing herself as a slow left-arm orthodox bowler. Women's cricket was in a nascent stage in the country when Edulji came to it and soon enough, she made captain and went on to lead the Indian side at the debut appearance of the team at the 1978 Women's World Cup.

She made a return as the Captain once more during the 1993 World Cup.

Currently, the Arjuna awardee from Mumbai is a part of the BCCI administration panel and continues to be associated with the game she loves. She was appointed to the panel in 2017 by the Supreme Court.

2. Shanta Rangaswamy - 1982 World Cup Captain

Jhulan Goswami (left), Shantha Rangaswamy and Mithali Raj - legends of Indian cricket

Yet another legend of the game, Shantha Rangaswamy was an able captain who took over the reins from Edulji for a good while and captained the Indian team during the 1982 World Cup. The right-handed batter from Tamil Nadu, Rangaswamy became the first recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award for Women from the Board of Control for Cricket in India.

Also an Arjuna awardee, Rangaswamy is still in touch with the sport and has become a cricket writer. Additionally, Rangaswamy is also the General Manager at a Canara Bank in Bangalore.

3. Pramila Bhatt - 1997 World Cup Captain

Pramila Bhatt

Helming the Indian side at the 1997 World Cup, Pramila Bhatt led the team to their first-ever semi-final at the World Cup. An all-rounder, Bhatt is remembered for the tied ODI match against New Zealand during the '97 World Cup.

Currently, Bhatt stays in Abu Dhabi with her husband, Sarangan Venugopalan and she has two kids. She works as a Senior Manager at a Talent Acquisition company.

4. Anju Jain - 2000 World Cup Captain

Anju Jain

Anju Jain ensured that she continued the legacy of the Indian women's team when she took over as the captain from Bhatt for the 2000 Women's World Cup as India made it to the semi-finals in this edition as well.

A wicket-keeper, Jain's 81 dismissals behind the wicket stands in the fourth position in terms of all-time dismissals by wicket-keepers from all countries. Also an Arjuna awardee, Jain also remains closely associated with cricket and has coached several youth and women's cricketers of Andhra Pradesh. Currently, Jain serves as the Head Coach of the Bangladesh Women's Cricket Team.

5. Mithali Raj - 2005, 2013, 2017, 2022 World Cup Captain

Mithali Raj

Mithali Raj has attained legendary status as India's most trustworthy captain, by now. Having led the side to two ODI World Cup finals, Mithali Raj has always been leading by example and it's a thing of wonder to see how much of a GOAT she is.

Raj has served as the captain for India in 3 previous ODI World Cup's and taken the team to the final in 2005 and 2017 and she will be the captain once more of the team as India begins their 2022 World Cup campaign in quest of that elusive trophy.

Under Mithali Raj's wing, the Indian team has grown in leaps and bounds and to no wonder, she is the highest run-scorer in women's international cricket and she is wonderfully consistent as well.

6. Jhulan Goswami - 2009 World Cup Captain

Jhulan Goswami

Yet another living legend of the game, Jhulan Goswami is another wonder to behold. Goswami, at 39, is the highest wicket-taker in women's ODI cricket and is regarded as one the best bowlers the game has produced.

Goswami had served as the captain of the Indian team for a few years and helmed the side at the 2009 World Cup.

Currently, Goswami continues to be in the Indian squad for the 2022 World Cup and the legend will be one to watch out for her as she embarks on what is expected to be her swansong World Cup appearance.

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