Former India captain Mithali Raj is keeping her options open for the women’s IPL tournament slated next year — player or mentor or even owning a team. The BCCI recently announced that the inaugural women’s IPL will take place in March next year before the men’s tournament. “I am keeping that role open, whether as a player or in a franchise in some way as a mentor,” she told PTI in an interview on Tuesday. “But right now, nothing is clear, there are five teams…how they are going to do, whether it’s a bidding or auction, so until there is some concrete information, I am keeping pretty much all things open,” said Mithali, who retired from international cricket earlier this year.
Asked if owning a team is an option, she said, “Maybe, yes”.
Mithali recently made her debut as a commentator and termed it an “interesting phase”.
“I am watching cricket from a very different optics. I still do feel the nerves if it’s a tight game. I still have to cross that barrier of not feeling those emotions of a player,” the former India skipper, who was in Bengaluru for an event, said.
“I am just testing the waters if I am apt for commentary. Maybe after a few months, I will see if I still have keenness to pursue it.” On attracting more young girls to take up cricket as a career, she said the first edition of the under-19 World Cup next year is a major step forward and termed it a big platform.
Asked what more needs to be done to further promote women’s cricket after BCCI’s announcement on equal match fees for its centrally-contracted female and male players, she said nothing changes overnight and there’s time for everything.
“Currently, one should appreciate the things that are improving and bolstering women’s cricket higher, whether it’s match fee, women’s IPL and Women’s Under-19 World Cup first edition next year,” she said, adding that the good changes that have happened should be amplified a lot more.
“That will probably lead to further changes,” she said.
Mithali said she is working on her autobiography and is looking at releasing it in the middle of next year.
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