Jemimah Rodrigues debut in the Indian cricket women’s team has finally happened. She had been knocking on the Team India door for quite a while even though she is still a teen! The 17-year-old is a batting allrounder and hails from Bhandup, Mumbai. Although Jemimah scored merely 37 in 27 deliveries, the right-hander scored a double century at the age of just 16. Jemimah, in November 2017, scored 202 runs in 163 balls in U19 Women’s Cricket Tournament. She was representing Mumbai at the U19 age-group against Saurashtra. After a record-shattering aggregate of 1013 runs in the Under-19 One-Day League & Knockout, she faced up to the cream of India’s bowling resources in the 2017-18 Women’s Challenger Trophy and emerged as the third-best batter.
There is nothing ordinary about this Mumbai girl. At 17, she has five years of experience playing at the national level. Not in one but two sports. But that doesn’t mean academics took a hit. When cricket becomes tiring, she picks up a hockey stick to relax. Or the trusty guitar she carries on every tour. Surely, that qualifies her as a certified all-rounder.
Jemimah started playing cricket at the age of four, and her father Ivan Rodrigues forced her to practice with her two older brothers at the Bandra academy. Rejected at the boys’ academy, Jemimah started practising at Shivaji Park under her father’s guidance. And to kill boredom she had her first-ever hockey stick gifted to her by brother Manuel. Jemimah repaid the faith by getting selected in both the state teams – hockey before cricket though – at the age of 10 and 12 respectively. And then came a point where she eventually had to make a choice. Maharashtra hockey team’s loss was Mumbai U-19 cricket’s gain.
And that is when Jemimah chose to become a cricketer full-time. Jemimah’s role-model is none other than Rohit ‘The Hitman’ Sharma. Interestingly, Sharma has also scored double-century and that too not once, not twice but three-times.