Age 17, bowls fast, hits the ball long when given the opportunity, Titas Sadhu is surely the one to look for from Bengal. With the inaugural ICC Women’s U-19 World Cup coming next year, Titas will be one of the future stars to watch out for in the tournament. Already played for the senior team, the pacer has troubled Indian stars like Shafali Verma and others in the Senior Women’s T20 Trophy earlier this year. We tried to get to know her story in our Women’s Cricket Exclusive from her coach, father and herself.
Coming from a sporting family in Chinsurah, West Bengal, Titas always had the support and DNA of her father and family members. She always had an interest to play any sports which led to her final destination, cricket. At age 12, she picked up a tennis ball and bowled from a few yards and her father knew where her daughter should head on. Interestingly, Titas’s sharp brain allowed her to learn quickly and grow faster as a cricketer from then on.
Ranadeep Sadhu, her father always wanted that her daughter should be able to play in a men’s first-division team, and then she will be able to play against any women’s team in the world. Therefore, he always fancied Titas to play with the boys and prepare against them. Even she plays for her home club in Chinsurah in all the tournaments along with other boys of the club.
“Our family is very much sports-oriented. Me being a former athlete knew all the nuances of the game. Titas always had an interest in playing any kind of sports. When I saw her bowl for the first time, I knew if we can work hard on her, she will make all of us proud,” Ranadeep Sadhu told Sportz Point.
Titas Sadhu runs 2km under 8 minutes
“I always believed that cricket is a game where you need to have clear thoughts and Titas always had that. So, only I had to work on her nutrition and fitness. Now, she runs 2km in 8 minutes. I think she is fitter than most of the girls out there. Moreover, she is very disciplined on her own. This is a plus point as well,” Ranadeep Sadhu added.
Priyankar Mukherjee, Titas’ coach since the beginning of her career echoed the same thoughts of her father. “Titas was always sharp. She learned more quickly than others. So, that helped me as a coach to work on her. You can probably say she is one of the fastest bowlers in women’s cricket in the country as of now. And, we are working on her every day to make her ready for bigger stages,” said Priaynkar Mukherjee.
“We plan at least one or two matches in a week, whenever she is home:” Priyankar Mukherjee
Priyankar feels, that the more matches Titas play the better she will get. That’s why he tries to fix at least two matches every week for her. In fact, he arranges matches for her even in this monsoon season. Be it on turf or a matting wicket, she gets a match. “Whenever she goes for a tour, she lacks some batting practices. So, we work on that she comes. Also, we try to execute our plans whenever we play matches. Thus, I make sure that she is at least playing one or two matches in a week when she is here,” Priyankar Mukherjee added.
Titas Sadhu, even at 17 has a very clear mindset about her cricket. Moreover, after spending a lot of time in the senior team along with Rumeli Dhar and others, she learned a lot about adapting to bigger stages. With 7 wickets in 5 matches in the Senior Women’s T20 Trophy, Titas was Bengal’s most successful bowler in the tournament. Moreover, her bowling economy of 3.50 was the tournament’s fifth best overall.
“Those five matches were very important for me. I learnt how to not complicate things. Rumeli (Dhar) di had given me the freedom to execute my plans. Most importantly, she backed me whenever I could not execute those plans perfectly,” Titas said on her learnings from the Senior Women’s T20 Trophy.
“A good length ball hitting the top of off-stump is a good ball for most of the batters”: Titas Sadhu
The right-arm pacer just came from her camp at NCA for the upcoming ICC U-19 Women’s World Cup and learnt how to plan better against opponents and adapt quickly to situations.
“The first thing that I learnt is that a good length ball hitting the top of off-stump is a good ball for most of the batters. Moreover, the other things that I learned were how to plan according to the situations and better when the pressure is on,” she added.
After coming from NCA Camp, Titas is focusing on adding more variety to her bowling. Keeping the T20 format in mind, she is working on her yorker and slower ones as well. Moreover, she is working on her hitting abilities too as a batter. “A half-volley ball should not stay in the ground. That is what I am practising with sir,” Titas told Sportz Point.
“Ellyse Perry and Ben Stokes are two of my favourite players:” Titas Sadhu
Although Titas idolise two genuine all-rounders of the game in Ellyse Perry and Ben Stokes, she wants to put more focus on her bowling. Meantime, she also wants to score those crucial runs when the team needs, coming lower down the order.
With more limelight on Women’s cricket now, more girls are coming through the ranks of Indian Cricket. Therefore, the competition is getting tougher with time. However, Titas Sadhu is not bothered about that, even a bit. “When we focus on others, we waste our energy in that. I do not want to focus on other things than my cricket. I want to learn and improve each day as a cricketer. The more I do that, I think I will be getting better.”
The ICC Women’s U-19 World Cup will take place in South Africa from January 2023.
For more exclusive interviews check our special segment here.