Women’s World Cup: India v Pakistan will inspire girls from both countries, says Bismah Maroof
Pakistan captain Bismah Maroof sees the upcoming 2022 Women’s World Cup marquee encounter between India and Pakistan as more than just a cricket match and something that will inspire millions of girls on both sides of the border take up the bat and start dreaming of making it big in sports.
India will open their campaign at the 2022 Women’s World Cup against Pakistan on March 6 in Tauranga, 2 days after the start of the tournament in New Zealand.
Bismah Maroof is well aware of the intensity needed for India and Pakistan to clash in marquee tournaments, but she said the marquee match takes on greater significance.
“Pakistan v India is indeed a great stage for any player to establish their credentials but at the end of the day it’s a cricket match that has to be won by executing the basics correctly and keeping it simple” , Maroof, who is making a comeback after motherhood, told the Press Trust of India.
“This match is a great opportunity to inspire millions of girls in Pakistan and India to take up the sport as a profession. It is the biggest rivalry and attracts countless eyeballs.
“I hope girls from both countries will watch this game and be inspired to get back to playing,” she added.
Pakistani cricket veteran Maroof, 30, praised the Indian team led by Mithali Raj but said she hoped the girls put up a good show against the Women in Blue.
“The Indian team are a good unit and have done well recently. They have also had some very good youngsters who have arrived recently,” she said.
“Our goal is to reach the semi-finals, which we have never done before. I firmly believe that this team has all the ingredients to do so. As the oldest player and captain of the team, she feels it is her duty to lead by example.
“As a senior player and captain of the team, you have to inspire your team and lead by example. If you don’t do the right things, you can’t demand them from the girls. I have a very clear vision with this team we need to be in the top four.”
VERY HAPPY TO BE BACK: MAROOF
Having experienced many ups and downs in her journey so far, she once decided to quit cricket to embrace motherhood.
“It’s been an amazing journey and I’ve really enjoyed it. Being a cricketer has shaped my life and played a huge part in who I am today. There were ups and downs, who made me learn,” she said.
“I’m very excited to be back. I feel like I’m making my debut for Pakistan again. I’m grateful to my family, especially my husband who has been so supportive throughout this phase. I also want to mention the support Pakistan Cricket Board has given me through the parent policy,” Maroof said.