Shabnim Ismail, another white lightning from SA
Yastika Bhatia pipped Jemimah Rodrigues to make it to the Indian squad for the 2022 Women’s ODI World Cup.
Bhatia was picked for the India tour of Australia, leading up to the world cup in place of Jemimah and did a fine job.
She hit a couple of half centuries against the decorated Australian bowling line up and showed that her talent was good enough to see her through against top-notch International bowling attacks.
Not intimidated by Australian pace attack
The young batter said that she wasn’t intimidated by the quality of Australian pace attack and received a lot of help from the Indian support staff
“I wasn’t intimidated by the occasion. It felt normal,” Bhatia said about the marquee tour of Australia. “I had spoken to my India seniors about what it’s like to debut against world-class opponents. Head coach Ramesh [Powar] sir and batting coach [Shiv Sunder] Das sir gave me good inputs during the Bengaluru camp and they had explained match scenarios and my batting role. That helped me mentally gear up and gave me confidence. Every time I’d step on a cricket field, things feel achievable. It’s like a positive challenge that you feel good about.”
WC heartbreak deja vu
As a young girl, Bhatia had seen the Indian women go down in the final of the 2017 ODI World Cup despite being so close to the trophy as the team suffered a collapse. She had vowed to take the team to the title the next time she had an opportunity to do so.
“I remember being very emotional after India’s 2017 loss in the final. It changed me. I wanted that next time whenever the team goes on the field, I also should be a part of the team to try and help them win the World Cup. I want to improve with each tournament that comes my way. Whenever I look back on my journey, it feels real because I know I have put in a lot of hard work in coming this far and worked harder instead of feeling bogged down by disappointments. My journey has just started and I want to do more in the future. I am looking forward to what’s in store for me.”
Bhatia got the opportunity and was part of the Indian side in the 2022 ODI World Cup. Unfortunately for her, she could not contribute a lot to the team’s success and India was knocked out of the competition in the group stage itself.