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Senior Women's T20 League: Dawn of a new season

“Dawn is to start and Dusk is to reorganize itself for the new Dawn.” The author of Let's Walk, Rajesh Walecha's words perfectly define any budding cricketer's journey in India. For them, a brand new season is like a bright sunny day after a long and cold winter which is filled with several opportunities to prove themselves whereas the end of the season is like embracing the darkness with no certainty about the future.

Senior Women's T20 league 2019-20 is starting from October 14 where 36 teams across India will be divided into five groups – one group of 8 teams and the rest of 7 teams each. Top two teams of each group will make two groups of five and play a Super League to decide the winner of the tournament.

Let's go back a little

In 2018-19, under the astute captaincy of Parveen Khan, Punjab women stunned everyone with their unbeaten 11-match streak to lift their maiden Senior Women's T20 league title. They defeated Karnataka women in the final by 4 runs. And, the sweetest part of Punjab's journey to the top was their team effort. Amarpal Kaur, Jasia Akhter, Ridhima with the bat, Sunita Rani, Neelam Bisht and Mehak Kesar with the ball always chipped in for Punjab at the crucial times.

Defending champion, Delhi women, 9 times winner Railways women and Madhya Pradesh women all had a great time till the league stage. Finished at the top in their group. Unfortunately, all the heavyweights of women's domestic cricket ended up in the same Super League group and paid the price for being so good. Surprisingly, it was Punjab which came out as the leader of the group despite the absence of their star player, Harmanpreet Kaur.

Filled with a lot of excitement, thrill and lessons, 2018-19 was a great season for the young teams from Eastern part of India as well as for some established teams. Saurashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Assam, Punjab, and Hyderabad were the real gainers in terms of performance compared to their previous years.

The Road Ahead

In the past, such tournaments have paved the way for many Indian women cricketers like Priya Punia, Harleen Deol, Bharti Fulmali, Pooja Vastrakar, Radha Yadav and Devika Vaidya to name a few. Also, not to miss, 15-year-old Shafali Verma who is the latest addition to the list.

However, a new season is equally important to the player who had a great outing last time and to the greenhorn who is finding a way into the league of professionals.

For the most, it's that time of the year when an individual, as well as the team battles, are equally important. Those who rise through the dawn and keep their composure will achieve success while rest will succumb to the darkness following thereafter.

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