Home Uncategorized USA wins historic t20 match

USA wins historic t20 match

by Robertson Henry
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The USA Under-19 Women’s cricket team wrapped up their first ever Twenty20 quickly on Monday, beating the Windward Islands Under-19 women by nine wickets; chasing down the 70 run target in only 63 balls.

After falling behind 05 for 2 in the third over, Zaida James (24 from 36) and Skyy Smith (11 from 48), stopped the bleeding for the Windward Islands, fighting through a 42 run partnership that lasted 71 balls, but the run rate never warmed up to a point where USA would be challenged. Windward Island ended their innings 70 for 6 with James and Smith the only batters in double figures, and both of them outscored by extras (25).

USA Captain Geetika Kodali used seven different bowlers in the attack, but Snigdha Paul with 3 for 08, and Yashaadidi Teka 1 for 08, were the standouts on the day, and were the only two to bowl the full quota of four overs. Sai Tanmayi Eyyunni claimed 1 for 9, and 2021 USA Women’s Under-19 National Championship’s leading wicket taker, Bhumika Bhadriraju achieved the rare Twenty20 feat of a maiden over, yielding only three runs in her spell.

“It was a win for our girls, who come here for the first time overseas to represent the national team. From a cricket point of view, the quality which I’m expecting from them is not there, but that’s because they’re new,” USA Women’s Under19 coach Asif Mutjaba told Emerging Cricket of the historic victory. “They want to win, they want to perform. For them, for us, it’s a big win. They’re here playing under the national flag, because of this, they have worked so hard, and you can see in their bowling and fielding, they were very compact.”

Mutjaba brings with him nine years of international playing experience with Pakistan, plus many years within the USA setup as a coach and selector.

Captaining the team is Geetika Kodali, a young veteran of the USA Women’s senior team. So far, the coach likes what he sees in his skipper. “Geetika is very mature, she’s leading from the front and she’s taking care of all the players, organizing everything for them. She moves them very nicely in the field. I’m very happy with the way she presents herself, it’s very fantastic.”

The historic win kicks off the first ever international tour for the USA’s inaugural Women’s Under-19 team. In 2021, USA Cricket managed to stage four national championships, including the first ever Women’s and Women’s Under-19 National Championships in Florida. The Nationals were preceded first by a talent search across major cricketing hubs throughout the country, and then by intra-regional and regional contests which helped narrow down the talent pool to an East and West team for the National Championships.

Mutjaba is optimistic about the recent investment bringing big rewards for women’s cricket in the USA, but sees the need for improvement at the grassroots level to provide more opportunities for young girls and women. “People might not realize, This is the first ever USA U19 women’s team ever made. If you have seen in the current senior team, how many under 19 players are playing in the women’s senior team, that is a great achievement. This is their own effort. If you see their resources locally available, it’s not as great as the males have. The inter-regionals help to increase participation. The girls come out and play cricket. That’s how it will be. You will see in a few years time how many girls are playing in this country, and it will definitely increase.”

Robertson Henry
Robertson Henry

Robertson S. Henry is a multi-time award winning sports journalist from Saint Lucia, currently residing in St. Vincent and the Grenadines. His coverage of sporting events both locally and regionally, not just landed him the Sports Journalist of the Year Award on numerous occasions, but recognition from the International Olympic Committee in 2005.

Henry began his fulltime career in journalism with the now defunct Crusader Newspaper in 1994, and worked with the Voice Newspaper until 2007. He established the sports website sportcaraibe, and believes “sports is the fourth pillar in the socio-economic development of the Caribbean.”

Henry has also produced work for a number of regional newspapers including the Trinidad Guardian, Stabroek Newspaper of Guyana, and in 2010 did a photo-shoot of Australian cricket captain Michael Clarke for the Australian Herald.


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