Smriti Mandhana expressed optimism for the upcoming WPL 2024 season, highlighting the RCB women’s team’s fresh perspective and aiming to set aside past performances.

Despite Royal Challengers Bangalore’s longstanding presence in the Indian Premier League (IPL) without a title win in 16 attempts, their women’s team’s hopes were high in the 2023 Women’s Premier League (WPL) after a promising auction. Disappointingly, despite a strong squad on paper, RCB’s women’s team finished fourth, missing out on the playoffs.

In anticipation of the upcoming tournament, skipper Smriti Mandhana underlined the lack of pressure, distancing themselves from the men’s team’s past. Mandhana believes in the fresh start of RCB’s women’s team and focuses on lifting the trophy in 2024.

“For us as RCB women’s team, we are all starting it as new. We are not thinking about what has happened in terms of RCB as a franchise. RCB is a massive franchise, and the only thing more than pressure, if we go on to win the title, the kind of happiness that the loyal RCB fans will get is something which I am looking forward to,” Mandhana said to NDTV Sports.

In the recent evolution of Indian cricket, significant strides have been made with the launch of WPL, equal pay for male and female cricketers, and increased national team matches. Mandhana highlighted the shift in fans’ engagement, appreciating and critiquing the women’s game, fostering a deeper connection.

“The change has been massive in the last 7-8 years, but the massive change I would say is the way people are looking at women’s cricket and that is a really good thing. They are appreciating and criticizing us as well which is good because they feel attached to us. Apart from WPL and equal pay, I think this has been one massive change in the way people watch women’s cricket,” the skipper added.

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Last Updated on December 9, 2023

Senior Sports Copywriter