Deepti Sharma


Personal Information
Aug 24, 1997 (26 years)
Birth Place
Agra, Uttar Pradesh
Batting Allrounder
Batting Style
Left Handed Bat
Bowling Style
Right-arm offbreak
ICC Rankings
Career Information
India Women, India A Women, Trailblazers, India Women Red, Western Storm, London Spirit Women, Sydney Thunder Women, Velocity, Birmingham Phoenix Women, India B Women, UP Warriorz
Well, if you belong to the millennial generation and don't feel the need to use a smartphone at the age of 18, people might mistake you for being antisocial. Some might even single you out f...
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Well, if you belong to the millennial generation and don't feel the need to use a smartphone at the age of 18, people might mistake you for being antisocial. Some might even single you out for being, perhaps, the only nerd in the group. Deepti Bhagwan Sharma - the versatile of versatilities in a game that she deeply loves - may not fit the modernized and ever-changing definition of trendy, but the star Indian all-rounder had her priorities set, in life of course, at a time when most of her fellow beings got busy schooling their brains regarding the brewing perks of social media.

To sum up Deepti's austerity in a nutshell would be: technology rather drifted into her life only after she was told about the need to be present in a common WhatsApp group of the Indian squad members.

Ironically, it was through that same WhatsApp group did Deepti learn about the magnitude of her innings against Ireland in May 2017. At a time when Indian and majority of the cricket fans got drenched in the ebbs and flows of IPL, the Agra-born superstar slammed 188 against Ireland in Potchefstroom to record the then second-highest individual score in Women's ODIs. She along with Punam Raut put up a 320-run stand for the opening wicket - the highest in international cricket - and became the first pair to register 300-run partnership in women's cricket.

Deepti's 'hall of fame' moment might have come at the age of 19, but it was at the age of 9 the roots of relentless passion for the game prospered. Such was her single-minded attitude towards the game, she would constantly pester her father - a retired officer with the Indian railways - to submit requests to her brother, Sumit, to take her to ground to get a feel of the game.

The ignition for the game didn't quite happen naturally though. At the age of 9, all Deepti wanted to do was to try and decode reasons behind the hard-earned fame his brother enjoyed in local cricketing circles. Sumit, a former Uttar Pradesh pacer, had his bowling action modeled after Lakshimpathy Balaji - the former Indian speedstar - and no wonder, he's managed to create that tinge of excitement around him.

Thanks to Deepti's funky slim-trim hairdo, she was - more often than not - mistaken as a boy soon as she started attending her brother's practice sessions. However, little did Deepti knew that one such instances would land her in a road to achieving something she never dreamt of.

One fine day, at the Ekalavya Sports Stadium in Agra, Deepti was asked to toss the ball back into the ground after she got busy lurking at the net sessions. And when she did hurl it back, albeit sluggishly, the ball smashed the stumps. Hit the bullseye. Following that projectile was Hemlata Kala, the former Indian cricketer and the then chairperson of the BCCI's women's selection panel. And bam!

Kala instantly enquired about that boy (yes, she got confused too) and later envisaged that the kid would go on to represent India someday. And that particular moment, injected the much-needed confidence for Deepti and she never looked back since.

Deepti kept attending auditions for the next few years, but was overlooked for state selections citing her age (was below 15 then). Kala, however, ensured she got ample experience by taking her to nets at the Railway Camps in Delhi and Allahabad. Slowly and steadily, the progress of Deepti's all-round skills caught the attention of Rita Dey, former Indian batter and selector, who noticed the 'boundless enthusiasm' which later helped her mentor the teenage girl.

Off-spin wasn't Deepti's natural skill. She had to switch to slow bowling after having tried medium-pace for most of her early teen days. The switch to spin wasn't natural either. It was only after several recommendations from selectors and local coaches that Deepti mastered the art of spin owing to her height and the natural release of the ball.

It was only a matter of time before Deepti debuted for India as she kept rolling impressive performances in the state games and, for the A side of course. The international debut eventually arrived (28 November 2014) at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru against South Africa in the series decider. Although India ended up on the losing side, Deepti recorded the second best bowling figures for India having made a couple of crucial breakthroughs while at it.

Deepti's place in the national squad was never in doubt since and she had gathered a bundle of special records even before reaching 20. A canny off-break bowler, gritty batter, and an agile fielder would be Deepti's primary skills in her CV, but if you had discounted her situation-assessing skills then beware, she has all the potential in the world to become one of the best in the business and perhaps, someday, become the skipper of the Indian side.

Written by Raju Peethala
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