Indian Women’s Cricket Team Wicketkeeper Nuzhat Parween Talks About “Taking One Step At A Time”

“You can’t perform well in the game if you are not enjoying it, and that’s the beauty of sports” – Nuzhat Parween

All of us enjoy the liberty of dreaming big, but only a dedicated few get to live their life exactly the way they dreamt it. And while most of us continue to crib about our nine-to-five jobs and the monotony that follows it, Nuzhat Parween, a 23-year-old wicket-keeper of the India “A” Women’s Cricket Team, is currently on a journey of manifesting all her aspirations and goals.

“I kept on believing in myself and my performance. I never had a gut feeling that I have to play this year or the following year for the Indian cricket team. So, my focus was to climb the ladder one step at a time.”

Nuzhat made her debut for the Indian national team in November 2016, in a Twenty20 International series against the West Indies, and has not looked back ever since. Following a remarkable record as a wicket-keeper, Nuzhat’s fans refer to her as MS Doni of the India women’s cricket team.

Looking at her records and achievements in the world of cricket, it’s almost impossible to believe that her journey as a sports person did not start on a cricket pitch. That’s right, the girl you see standing behind the wickets, with her eyes focused on the leather ball, actually kicked started her sports career in a football field. She was the captain of the Madhya Pradesh under 16 football team.

In her quest to dive a little deeper and follow her heart’s desire, Nuzhat decided to take a leap of faith and exchanged her soccer shoes for a pair of wicket keeping gloves.

Some might call it a high risk gamble, but some of us who live with the fear of taking risks, especially when it’s our career that is at stake, will understand what it takes to make a decision such as this one.

Thankfully in Nuzhat’s story, her family played the role of a protagonist and stood by her side through thick and thin. “I am thankful to my parents that they supported me very well. It never once crossed my mind that I should stop playing,” she said.

The audience might see cricket as this world loaded with stardom, glamour, and a whole lot of bling, but for Nuzhat, it is a game that brought stability and discipline to her life. “Sports teaches us a lot about discipline. Obviously we have to compromise on a lot of things unnecessary enjoyments, and holidays. If you have to survive here, you have to work hard. I have learned a lot about self-dependency and taking responsibility. You can call it personality development.”

Cricket was a lifestyle choice that turned her into an independent, responsible, and confident individual, and according to her, more than the physical strength, it’s very important for a cricketer to feel confident.

“Confidence plays a very essential role in cricket. Your personality should be such that the bowler thinks twice before delivering the ball to you. If I am not confident, I won’t be able to survive on the pitch,” she added.

She believes that in addition to the physical strength, that helps a player last longer on the field, it is very important for cricketers to be mentally tough. Mental strength helps them deal with the constant pressure that follows them, on and off the field.

“We have to be professional, there is a lot of pressure from everywhere. There is pressure from the family, if I am not doing well, there is a pressure of selections, and the pressure of living up the hopes of your teammates and coaches. But the beauty of sports is such that if you don’t enjoy the game, you won’t perform well, and this works as a stress buster. We enjoy the game and we perform well”

One look at her Instagram account, and you will realise that this girl, who completely rules the pitch every time she is standing behind the wickets, is like any other young woman trying to live every single second to the fullest. She loves documenting her life on social media- from treating her fans with a sneak peek into her cricket career to posting random selfies – Nuzhat enjoys it all!

Finally, it is the constant support of her family that has enabled Nuzhat to chase her dreams and make it large. With every step she takes towards her goal, Nuzhat is carving a deeper mark in the history of Cricket.


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