She scored 36 off 27 with the aid of three fours and a six as India Women posted 138 for 6 after winning the toss and batting first in the opening match of the series. Radha Yadav then claimed 2 for 22 while Deepti Sharma, Pooja Vastrakar and Shafali Verma chipped in with one wicket each as India Women held Sri Lanka to 104 for 5.
The youngster has not been a constant presence in the playing XI recently. She was warming the benches during the ODIs and T20Is in England last year. Speaking after picking up the player of the match trophy, Rodrigues said, “My height is the same but mental thing has changed a lot. In the last few years, from the last Sri Lanka tour, the journey hasn’t been very smooth and there have been a lot of ups and downs.”
On how interactions with Indian men’s captain Rohit, keeper-batter Pant and a few others helped her after she was dropped from the team, the talented batter elaborated, “I also had the opportunity in the last few months to talk with cricketers like Rohit Sharma and Rishabh Pant and others. They actually told that these moments define you and prepare you for something greater that’s coming. If you look at it [in a] negative way it is not going to help. But these are the moments that define you as a cricketer. I was blessed to speak to them and some of our teammates.”
She added that she has become calmer and has understood the value of having good relationships. Rodrigues stated, “My family have been there. The last few months have helped me understand even my game better. This is the cricketer’s life – nobody’s life is smooth and what I am learning is to get better every time.”
Following this win, India Women have taken the significant 1-0 lead in the three-match T20I series. The second game will also be played in Dambulla on Saturday, July 25.
–By A Cricket Correspondent