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Bangladeshi women cricketers show the way

Bangladeshi women cricketers show the way

VICTORY could not have been sweeter than this.

Bangladesh’s women’s cricket team has more than made up for the disappointment brought by their male counterparts in the recent T20 series.

Winning the Women’s T20 Asia Cup in Kuala Lumpur by defeating India, one of the strongest teams in the tournament, our sportswomen have proven their worth and finally been recognised for their resilience and talents.

This is the first time that any of our cricket teams has won a grade-one level international competition.

It goes without saying that women cricketers do not enjoy the fanfare or the generous financial rewards that the men’s cricket team does.

Yet they have time and again shown that, given the opportunity, they can rise to the occasion, with confidence and flair.

It is unfortunate that women cricketers get only a fraction of what their male counterparts get and do not enjoy the widespread societal approval and logistical support that male cricketers are entitled to.

In fact, for a girl or woman, playing any sport is a big challenge given the limited opportunities to train and compete.

Many of these talented sportswomen come from humble backgrounds and live in conservative societies where girls playing field sports is hardly encouraged.

But our women cricketers have proved that they can overcome all odds as long as they have the skills, talent and pure determination to win.

Their outstanding performance, beating India twice and Pakistan once, in the tournament, is a case in point.

This victory should wake us up to the fact that women’s sports must be encouraged at the national level by providing girls and women the opportunities and facilities to train, compete and hone their skills so that they can compete in international competitions.

This means more investment from both the government and private sector, in sports facilities, tournaments, equipment etc. for women.

Women players, moreover, should receive better yearly stipends from the government.

It will only bring in more accolades for the country.

—The Daily Star / Bangladesh

Published in Dawn, June 13th, 2018

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