She was the tallest girl in her area. People would look back if they walked on the road. Jhulan, who grew up in Chakda, a small town in Nadia district of West Bengal, had a cricket fever in his childhood that just became an obsession. The father, who worked in Air India, was not particularly interested in cricket. However, he never stopped his daughter from playing. But the mother did not like her bowling with the boys in the street.
As a child, she played cricket on the road with the boys in the neighborhood. In those days she used to bowl very slowly. So the boys easily hit fours and sixes on his ball. Sometimes he was also made fun of. The boys of the team used to tease him and say – Jhulan, you must stay. If you throw the ball, our team will lose. One day his heart felt it. Decided that now I will show as a fast bowler. Learned the tricks of fast bowling and started beating the boys. Jhulan’s bowling soon became a topic of discussion.
This matter reached the father. When he asked, Jhulan said- Yes, I want to be a cricketer. Please get me trained. Father did not like to hear this. Jhulan was 13 then. He wanted the daughter to do a good job studying and writing. But the daughter had made an intention to make cricket a career. Eventually he had to accept the daughter’s insistence. In those days, there were no special arrangements for cricket training in Nadia. Therefore, Jhulan decided to train at the Cricket Academy of Kolkata. There were many doubts in the minds of parents about making the daughter a cricketer. What will a girl do in cricket? How will his future be? But after reaching the Cricket Academy, all his fears were removed. Jhulan says- Coach Sir explained to the parents that now girls also play cricket. Please do not worry. Your daughter is a great bowler. One day she will illuminate your name. After listening to the coach, the worry of the parents reduced to a great extent.
Had to study with sports. That is why it was decided that Jhulan would go to Kolkata only three days a week for training. After five o’clock in the morning, a local train from Chakda reached Kolkata station. After this, the cricket academy had to be reached by bus by seven thirty in the morning. After two hours of practice, she would return home by bus and train and walk to school with books. In the beginning, father used to go with him. Later she started traveling alone. Jhulan says – four hours were spent traveling to and from the academy. There was a lot of tiredness also. But it made me very strong physically and mentally. The more you struggle, the more your capacity increases. During training, the coach focused on his fast bowling. His height of five feet 11 inches proved to be a boon for him. Practice hours increased over time. Going to school became less. Now cricket had become a passion. Jhulan says- I used to enjoy getting the frozen batter out. Frankly, due to the tall height, it is very easy to bounce the ball. So my path became easier.
Hard work paid off. She was selected in the Bengal women’s cricket team after playing a few matches with local teams. The daughter was becoming famous, but for the mother she was still a small child. Until she returned home, the mother was not relieved. One day when she reached home late playing the match, there was an uproar. Jhulan says – When I arrived late, my mother was very angry. They did not open the door. I had to stand outside the house for several hours. Since then I decided that I would never return home without telling my mother. He was worried about me, so his anger was justified.
Jhulan played his first Test match at the age of 18 against England in Lucknow. It was followed by the opportunity to play the first one-day international against England in Chennai the following year. The biggest breakthrough came in 2006, when on the strength of his best bowling, the Indian team won a big victory by defeating England in a Test match. In this match, he took 10 wickets for 78 runs. After this, due to fast bowling, people started calling him ‘Nadia Express’. In 2007, she was awarded the Women’s Cricketer of the Year Award by the ICC. Awarded Arjuna Award in 2010 and Padma Shri in 2012. His bowling speed is 120 kilometers per hour. So she has the status of being the fastest woman bowler in the world. Recently he has set a new record. She has now become the world’s highest wicket-taking female cricketer.