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Don’t want to look glamorous in my India jersey: Smriti Mandhana

Smriti Mandhana was recently retained in Category ‘A’ in the BCCI Central contracts, worth `50 lakh annually.

, ET Bureau|
Last Updated: Jan 21, 2020, 08.24 AM IST
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A couple of months ago, a website photo-shopped an image of Mandhana from a press conference, lightening her skintone and adding kajal to her eyes.
A couple of months ago, a website photo-shopped an image of Mandhana from a press conference, lightening her skintone and adding kajal to her eyes.
Indian cricketer Smriti Mandhana made the ICC ODI and T20 Teams of the Year in 2019. Next up is one of the biggest challenges of her career — the T20 World Cup, where she is the vice-captain.

In a phone interview with ETPanache from her home in Sangli a few weeks ago, the 23-year-old sounded bubbly as she shared her fitness routine in the lead up to the World Cup, to be held in Australia from February 21 to March 8.

“There are some days on which we have smart running sessions, which I like. A smart run is to practice running between wickets, so we run the length of the pitch. But runs that are 35-40 minutes long, I find tough. I have to do these at least once or twice a week and I don’t sleep too well the previous night,” said Mandhana.

A couple of months ago, a website photo-shopped an image of Mandhana from a press conference, lightening her skintone and adding kajal to her eyes and lipstick on her mouth. The image went viral on social media and was widely criticised.

On the phone, the youngster’s voice changed as she expressed her anger over the incident. In a no-nonsense tone, Mandhana said, “That photo was not something that I looked forward to because it was in my Indian cricket kit. When I am in my India jersey, I don’t want to be looking glamorous. I think it is a personal choice of how people choose to look. If you want to look good, you can look good. On the ground, I am a professional cricketer — I don’t need to wear lipstick. If I want to look good, I know when to wear make-up. I do not accept it being put on my face when I am wearing the India kit.”

Smriti Mandhana enjoys her downtime with games, music and movies.
Smriti Mandhana enjoys her downtime with games, music and movies.

Asked if she had complained about the matter to authorities, Mandhana said she chose to not pursue the matter.

Mandhana’s teammate Shafali Verma recently became the youngest Indian to score an international fifty at 15. She bettered cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar’s record. Often, people have made light of records made in the women’s game. Mandhana shared her take, “Cricket is cricket. You have to hit the ball. At that age for a male cricketer or for a female cricketer… I am not a person who believes in comparison. It is a great achievement. I was there, it was amazing to watch.”

Football on Playstation, music and movies are ways in which Mandhana relaxes when she is not playing.

“I am professional. If I am on the field, I am 100 per cent focused on that. Off the field, I switch off. I may think about it [the game] for 15-20 minutes, but after that, I don’t. I don’t stress if I get a 100 or a 0.”

BCCI Awards: Virat Bags Polly Umrigar Trophy As Anushka Cheers On, Harmanpreet Kaur Wins Bi...

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Winners Take It All

13 Jun, 2018
The annual BCCI awards night was a star-studded one, seeing crickerts from generation get together for the event. Kohli, Jalaj Saxena, Parvez Rasool, Krunal Pandya, Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana were among the sports stars feted for their consistent performances. Former players Anshuman Gaekwad and Sudha Shah received the CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement award. The function was also attended by the Afghanistan national team which will take on India in their first ever Test match.
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