Shikha Pandey against drastic changes in playing conditions for the women’s game
At a time when the women’s version of cricket is slowly gaining popularity, India’s Jemimah Rodrigues and Kiwi Sophie Devine had mooted the need for innovation to accelerate its growth trajectory. However, Indian pace-bowling all-rounder, Shikha Pandey feels there is no need to tinker with the rules and playing conditions of the game to make it more attractive.
Pandey took to twitter to elucidate her opinion. In an elaborate thread, Pandey termed the proposed changes as “superfluous”, and drew comparisons with other sports to clarify her stand.
I have been reading/ hearing a lot about the changes being suggested to help grow women's cricket/ make it a more attractive product. I personally feel most of the suggestions to be superfluous.— Shikha Pandey (@shikhashauny) June 27, 2020
"An Olympic 100m female sprinter doesn't run 80m to (win a gold) and clock the same timing as her male counterpart," tweeted Pandey in her defense. "So the whole 'decreasing the length of the pitch' for whatever reasons seems dubious.”
Using different playing conditions would mean having to scrap double-headers with a men’s game being played on the same day, Pandey duly noted. "Also, it almost definitely takes double-headers out of the equation," says Pandey. Should such a suggestion be considered, the conditions specifically custom-made for the women's game would need to be changed in an unreasonably short period for a men's game on the same day at the same venue.”
Pandey also weighed in on the suggestion of reducing the size of the ball, saying "Reducing the size of the ball is fine, but as Ian Smith suggested, it only works if the weight remains the same," says Pandey, before justifying, "This will allow for bowlers to grip the ball better - more revs for the spinners - and hits will also travel further (not be the case if it is light).”
Bringing the boundaries in is also something Pandey is against, and she put forth her case against it, saying ”Please don't bring the boundaries in! We have surprised you with our power-hitting in recent times, so remember, this is only the beginning; we will get better. Please have patience. We are skilled players, who are evolving.”
In order to draw more eyeballs to the women’s game, Pandey has a different strategy. "Why not have DRS, Snicko, Hotspot, all of the technical acumen and live broadcast for every game that we play anywhere in the world?” she added.