Group photo of Karnataka team with Mahantesh G K, Roger Binny, and Mamatha Maben.

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], Dec 13 : Cricket Association for the Blind in India (CABI) and the Karnataka Cricket Association for the Blind (KCAB) are organising the first-ever nationals for blind women cricketers in Delhi.

The league phase will be played on December 16, 17 and 18 at the DDA Sports Complex, Siri Fort, the DDA Sports Complex, Saket and the Jamia University ground.

Teams from Delhi, Karnataka, Odisha, Jharkhand, Maharashtra, Kerala and Bengal will fight it out for a spot in the final that’s scheduled for December 19 at the DDA Sports Complex, Siri Fort.

CABI is the cricketing arm of Samarthanam, a non-profit organisation, registered to govern cricket tournaments and handhold aspiring blind cricketers in India. It is the apex body working towards game development of cricket for the blind and is affiliated to World Blind Cricket Ltd (WBC).

The move to form the first-ever women’s cricket team has been made to encourage, build and nurture women’s sporting talent and recognise women’s forte in blind cricket in the same light as the men’s team.

Recently, the Karnataka team have done us proud by winning the first-ever inter-state bilateral series for blind against Kerala.

Karnataka state team are excited to fly for the first time and will brave the chilly weather to pit against the teams.

“We have been conducting Nationals for men for many years now and thought it was time we did the same for the women. It was a Herculean task for all the participating states as it’s not easy for parents to allow their children to take part in outstation tournaments, more so when they are visually challenged, but the various state associations prevailed on them,” said GK Mahantesh, joint president of CABI and KCAB.

“We have made a start with Eight states taking part this time. Next year we hope to double the number,” he added.

Roger Binny, president of the KSCA, while addressing the media was appreciative of the determination of the Women’s Blind Cricket team to take on the challenge.

He congratulated the efforts of the CABI and the move to form and launch the Women’s Cricket Team. He emphasised the need to be passionate to play the game. He congratulated the team and wished them the very best for the tournament.

As many as 24 states are affiliated to the CABI. B2 category player Sunita Dhondappanavar will lead Karnataka’s campaign in the tournament. The 14-member team coached by Shikha Shetty leaves for Delhi by air on Thursday night.

To pick the Karnataka squad for the first time as many as six selection camps were held in Bangalore with as many as 85 participants from various blind schools across Karnataka. 28 players were shortlisted and put through training sessions before the final 14 were picked.

The Karnataka team travelled to Kerala recently for a bilateral series in which they beat the hosts 2-0 in the three-match series, with the final match being washed off.

Name of the player with category and district are as follows:

Jayalakshmi B B3 Ballari, Kavya N.R B3 Tumkuru, Deepika B3 Tumkuru, Nethravathi V B2 Ballari, Renuka Rajput B2 Vijayapura, Sunita Dhondappanavar B2 Belagavi, Anita B2 Kalburgi, Shilpa GP B2 Davanagere, Bhoomika S.Valmiki B2 Karwar, Rajeshwari Saradar B1 Belagavi, Asha Dahal B1 Bengaluru, Varsha U B1 Chitradurga, Vijayalaxmi Moleshwar Nemgoud B1 Bengaluru, Kavitha C B1 Ballari,

Shika Shetty (Coach), Javare Gowda (Manager).


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