Mumbai Indians buys Assam’s Jintimani Kalita

Jintimani Kalita
Jintimani Kalita

Jintimani Kalita of Assam will represent Mumbai Indians in the inaugural edition of the Women’s Premier League from March 4.

The 19-year-old all-rounder is the first woman cricketer from Assam to be bought for the WPL. Wicketkeeper batter Uma Chetry was the other player from Assam to be shortlisted for the auction but she went unsold.

Jintimani Kalita was bought at Rs 10 lakh, her base price, in the auction that took place on February 13.

“I’m excited and looking forward to the new challenges,” Jintimani told reporters at her home in Mangaldai.

She has already represented several teams in BCCI-conducted tournaments in the last several years.

Jintimani also thanked her local coaches during her initial days and Assam Cricket Association for all the support.

“I must thank all the coaches who played a crucial role during my early days in Mangaldoi. I also thank Assam Cricket Association for all the support and assistance,” she added.

JIntimani Kalita was just 12 years old when she first touched a cricket ball. She accompanied her brother to the ground and occasionally got to grab the ball that crossed the bounder line. It was in 2016/17 and the location was Mangaldai Stadium.

At the age of 18 years, she has already played for Assam senior women’s team and also represented India B in the Under-19 Women’s One Day Challenger Trophy in 2021.

In 2022, Jintimani was invited to the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru for a high-performance camp which is for Under-19 cricketers. The top 25 players from across the country were invited to the camp.

“It was a great opportunity for me to prove my worth. I’m lucky to be there. I got to play and train with some of the best talents of the country,” Jintimani had said during an interaction.

Dream of donning India colours:

The bowling all-rounder is determined to don the Indian colours. An ardent fan of Jhulan Goswami and Smriti Mandhana, she will leave no stone unturned to make it happen.

“I know it’s not easy but that is my goal. I need to put more focus on my fitness and eventually, it will help me to improve my game overall,” she added.

Looking back:

When Jintimani accompanied her brother, she was not sure if she too would be a part of the game. With the touch of the ball and the sound of the bat, she started to fall in love with the game.

“Initially there were not many girls there to play. So, she started to train with the boys. The coaches and trainers who saw her play believed that she has the potential to do something,” recalled her father Nakul Kalita.

Then she gradually got to train at Maligaon, Nehru Stadium in Guwahati and ACA Stadium at Barsapara.

Her mother Sewali Kalita too has been very supportive. “She wanted to play and we just wanted her to do that and excel in that,” said Sewali Kalita.

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