The journey of all-rounder Deepti Bhagwan Sharma from the land of Saharanpur to Lord’s has been an awe-inspiring one. The 19-year-old Deepti embarked upon her cricketing journey at the age of nine but she was quite unsure as how things would pan out. However, the strong willpower and a firm determination to play for India eventually lead her to the doorsteps of Indian women’s team. In a family of 7 siblings, Deepti was very close to her elder brother Sumit. In fact, it was Sumit who introduced her to the game of cricket.
In an interview to Indianexpress.com, the Saharanpur girl recalled the entire event which changed her career, “I used to accompany my brother Sumit to his academy. One day I was sitting on the stairs watching his match and suddenly the ball came to me. I threw the ball and it directly hit the stumps. There were a few girls practising on the field and among them was Hemlata Kala (former Indian cricketer). She asked my brother if I was his younger brother. In reply, he corrected her and said that she is my sister,” Deepti recalls. “Without wasting much time, Hemlata ma’am asked Sumit to get me for training every day.”
Deepti likes to watch cricket videos in her free time and in order to improve her spin bowling, she prefers watching India’s seasoned spinner Ravichandran Ashwin’s videos and also tries to replicate his variations.
“I haven’t met him yet but am a fan of the variations he uses in Test cricket. I often try to bowl the carrom ball at the nets but haven’t used it in a match situation as yet. It is necessary to have variations in your bowling as most of the non-Asian players find it tough to handle spin.” she said.
On being asked about Mithali Raj’s captaincy in pressure situations, the left-handed batswoman compared her captain’s cool headed approach to that of former Indian captain MS Dhoni. “Mithu di is like the Dhoni of our team. She is cool and composed at crucial moments. She believes our performance should speak for us. I always try to learn good things from her,” Deepti stated.
Like all the other women’s cricketer in India, Deepti also believes the IPL-alike tournament can do wonders to women’s cricket in India, “Women’s IPL should have started long back but its never too late. The sooner it starts it’s better for us,” she concluded.