Published on: Jun 09, 2022
Indian women’s cricket legend Mithali Raj announced her retirement from all forms of international cricket on Wednesday, June 8. The 39-year-old, who debuted in international cricket as a 16-year-old way back in 1999, finishes a glorious 23-year-old career with 12 Tests, 232 ODIs and 89 T20Is. While she retired from T20 international cricket in 2019, Raj was captain of the Test and one-day teams at the time of her retirement.
Sharing an emotional post on Twitter, the India great wrote, “Thank you for all your love & support over the years! I look forward to my 2nd innings with your blessing and support.”
Her statement read, “I set out as a little girl on the journey to wear the India blues as representing your country is the highest honour. The journey was full of highs and some lows. Each event taught me something unique and the last 23 years have been the most fulfilling, challenging and enjoyable years of my life. Like all journeys, this one too must come to an end. Today is the day I retire from all forms of international cricket.”
Mithali ends her career with 7,805 runs in ODI matches. She is the first women batter in international cricket to score over 7000 runs in the format. Raj hammered seven centuries and a record 64 fifties in her one-day career.
She added in her retirement statement, “Each time I stepped on the field, I gave my very best with the intent to help India win. I will always cherish the opportunity given to me to represent the tricolour. I feel now is the perfect time to call curtains on my playing career as the team is in the capable hands of some very talented young players and the future of Indian cricket is very bright.”
Mithali scored 699 runs in Tests and 2364 runs at an average of 37.52 in T20Is. The 39-year-old holds the record for having scored the most number of runs in women’s international cricket. She achieved the feat in July 2021, when she surpassed Charlotte Edwards’ tally of 10,273 runs.
Thanking the BCCI for supporting her as player and captain of the Indian Women’s team, Mithali concluded her statement by saying, “It was an honour to have led the team for so many years. It definitely shaped me as a person & hopefully helped shape Indian Women’s Cricket as well. This journey may have ended but another one beckons as I’d love to stay involved in the game I love and contribute to the growth of Women’s Cricket in India and world over.
“Special mention to all my fans. thank you for all your love & support,” she signed off.
–By A Cricket Correspondent