India fast bowler Jhulan Goswami said winning a World Cup title remains her ultimate dream even as she’s basking in the glory of becoming the first woman to take 200 wickets in One-Day Internationals.
Down with a heel injury, Goswami returned home on Thursday after being ruled out of the ongoing T20I series against South Africa. She will now head to National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru to recover within four to six weeks.
Eyeing World Cup glory
India have never won the coveted World Cup as they narrowly missed the ODI World Cup title going down to hosts England by nine runs at the Lord’s in July last year in what was their second defeat in a final.
But 2018 provides them another opportunity to take a shot at glory with the World Twenty20 hosted by the defending champions West Indies from November 9-24.
“The preparation has begun from the series in South Africa. With about a year left, it’s the perfect time for us to prepare in the right way,” said Jhulan. “If we win, it will be like an icing on the cake. Obviously I began playing keeping the World Cup in mind always. It does not come every year (...) It’s like winning an Olympic gold. The process take a long time, it does not happen overnight. It’s the ultimate dream. The first target will be to be top four,” she added.
Preparations have begun
Jhulan said the process has begun and the upcoming series against England, Australia and the Asia Cup will provide ample opportunities to sharpen their skills.
“We will be well-prepared. We have a lot of matches lined up. After the series in South Africa, there will be a tri-nation T20I series against England, Australia. There is also Asia Cup,” she said.
Australia women will tour India in March next year for a three-match ODI series as part of the ICC Women’s Championship, followed by the T20I tri-series.
“After the World Cup hype was so high, it was about holding on to the momentum. That was our focus. We wanted to keep playing like where we had left. Everyone was focused on giving their best, and play good as a team. We had a fine preparation for the South Africa series, beginning with warm-up matches there,” she said.
Jhulan further said they have included newcomers – Tanya Bhatia, Jemimah Rodrigues and Pooja Vastrakar – for the series in South Africa keeping in mind the World Twenty20.
A record to remember
Jhulan was proud to bag her 200th wicket recently.
“Never thought about the milestone when I started my career. In a long career, you are bound to achieve milestones. I never ran after a milestone. Nothing lasts forever but I would prefer a medium-pacer breaking my record,” said Jhulan. Incidentally in the same match she sustained the heel injury and could not train the next day as MRI revealed the nature of injury. “It will take some time to recover. I have to accept the fact. It will take four to six weeks. I had an injury in 2010 and before the World Twenty20 in 2016 as well. It’s nothing new and I hope to be fit soon,” she concluded.