June 16, 2017

'We're going to learn from the ups and downs of the last three World Cups'

Jhulan Goswami on being the highest wicket-taker in ODIs, and the young Indian bowlers she is mentoring

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'Never thought I'd beat Fitzpatrick's record'

You recently broke the career ODI wickets record that had been held by Australia's Cathryn Fitzpatrick. Among all of your other career achievements, what does this particular record mean to you?
Until today I never thought about becoming the highest wicket-taker. I just enjoy every moment and try to contribute for my team. It's a nice feeling becoming the highest wicket-taker, because when I started, Fitzy was one of the finest medium-pacers I have seen in women's cricket. She was an extraordinary bowler and I learned to watch her bowling skills, the way she prepared, leading from the front.

Were you aware that you were nearing the record? And what was the reaction from the team as you got close and when you passed her?
We knew that I was a few wickets behind Fitzy, but my preparation was to contribute for my team. When I crossed the landmark, one of my team-mates came and told me, "Finally you have broken Fitzy's highest wicket-taker thing, so now you're the highest wicket-taker. Yes, you've done it!" We enjoyed and celebrated in our way, and it was one more occasion that we enjoyed as a team.

This will be your fourth World Cup. You were part of the squad in 2005 that made the final and lost to Australia. That's the closest you've come. How has this preparation compared to the previous three World Cups you've been a part of?
This is a new World Cup, new season. You've been in the finals, been a semi-finalist and been a No. 7. The last three World Cups - there were a lot of ups and downs we saw. So this time we'll go one by one. It's a long way because we're going to play round-robin matches. Whatever we have done in the past, we'll learn from that and try to implement it this time.

"It's a nice feeling becoming the highest wicket-taker, because Fitzy was one of the finest medium-pacers I have seen in women's cricket" © Getty Images

What kind of impact has the opportunity to play more games through the ICC Women's Championship had on getting younger players exposure prior to the World Cup?
One good thing about this team is, the last few years we have played a lot of bilateral series in the ICC Women's Championship. Because of the matches, they have the experience of international cricket and they know how to handle pressure now. Previously, sometimes a few new girls would come straightaway into a World Cup side and were not able to handle the pressure.

What's it like trying to mentor some of the younger bowlers? Are there any you've taken under your wing who you think can pick up the mantle and lead the bowling attack after you leave?
Whatever I have learned in the last 15 years, I try to share those experiences with them. They are also very keen to learn something from me. It's fun playing with them. Sometimes it's a bit challenging. You need to have a lot of patience because overnight everything can't change, but it's fun.

Shikha Pandey is very exciting. She is doing consistently well for the team. She has a very good work ethic. She's keen to learn new things. Mansi Joshi has just come into the international circuit. If you give her some time, she'll be a good bowler for the future. You need to give them time and a lot of confidence so they can deliver for you and play freely for the team.

What's the No. 1 thing you hope to get out of this World Cup experience?
As a team if you do well, then definitely the ultimate goal is winning the World Cup. But for that you have to work hard. It's not coming easily. All the teams are very good and very balanced. You have to fight each team.

Peter Della Penna is ESPNcricinfo's USA correspondent. @PeterDellaPenna

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  • Soumya Das Gupta on June 16, 2017, 8:36 GMT

    Legend of Indian cricket Chakdah express I have met her she is an awesome personality always there for a good cause.

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