Lakshmi appointed first woman match referee

HYDERABAD: From the dusty bylanes of Rajahmundry in Andhra Pradesh to becoming the International Cricket Council's first woman match referee, 51-year-old Gandikota Sarva Lakshmi, has come a long way. Lakshmi was appointed to ICC's international panel of match referees on Tuesday and will be eligible to officiate in international games with immediate effect.
Lakshmi has been on the domestic circuit for a long time. She had led Andhra and South Zone women's teams apart from playing for SCR, Bihar and East Zone from 1986 to 2004. Lakshmi, who started her cricket journey at the U-19 level, was a right-handed batter and medium-pacer. She got her first major breakthrough when she was picked for the Bihar state team in 1986.
Tracing her journey, Lakshmi said: "My cricket journey began by chance. My father, late Seshagiri Sarma, used to work in Jamshedpur. So, I did my primary education there. Since I performed badly in class X exams, I got into college through sports quota and represented the Government Women's college in Bistarpur, Jamshedpur. The Bihar state coach was impressed with my bowling skills and picked me for the state team immediately. I represented Bihar junior, senior and East zone teams. During an inter-zonal match, I met Andhra's Rajni Venugopal, who became a good friend. She helped me get a job in SCR in 1989 and ever since I've been living in Secunderabad," Lakshmi said.
Railways then was the virtual Indian women's cricket team. "Since there were several top-class players in the Railways team, I rarely got an opportunity to showcase my skills. My dream to represent India nearly came true in the same year," she said.

Let's block ads! (Why?)