Pakistani women have been generating all the buzz lately and hitting the headlines for their increased prominence in the nation’s beloved sport of cricket. Female cricket is quickly gaining popularity as more and more women are being welcomed into the sport through greater access to professional platforms such as coaching centers and regular training to help them specialize in the bat and ball game.
Glass ceiling weakens as Pakistan empowers women cricketers
As Bismah Maroof and her green caps bask in the recent victory over Bangladesh, Pakistan looks to a future where more women will pick up bats and step on the turf. Pakistan recently beat Bangladesh 3-0 in the T20 series, ushering a new era in the country’s history where women have been, for decades, in the bleachers to cheer and rarely on the field of play.
In a country that arrived late to the global acceptance of women in all walks of life, including sports, there are still echoes of restrictions on women. The dark age of gender-based preference that has engulfed Pakistan since its inception now seems to be slowly washing away. Pakistani professional female athletes have called for inclusion for a long time and their voices are finally being heard, both by the government and by corporate entities as it has become increasingly important to support initiatives aiming to break the glass ceiling as in the case of women’s cricket.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has taken steps to empower women in sports in the past. One of their more recent initiatives is the Cric4Us partnership with Uber, aimed at providing opportunities for aspiring female cricketers. Cric4Us Programme is a women cricket development project launched under the flagship of Women Cricket Vision 2022, which focuses on the growth of the sport in schools and aims to provide a proper pathway for making way to emerging and national teams.
Under the Cric4Us program, Uber, the ride-hailing giant, and PCB are providing cricket equipment and training school-based sports staff, particularly women coaches and mentors. The six-month-long program claims to benefit more than 1,500 players through collaboration with schools in 14 cities across Pakistan to bring people from the grass root to
It is grassroots initiatives like these that can and will transform the landscape of women’s cricket in Pakistan. Women’s empowerment through sports is one of the silent revolutions taking place all over the world. But it is important to bear in mind that this dynamic shift, although optimistic, is a mere stepping stone in the bigger picture of an inclusive sports arena. For all the progress it has made, this is still plenty of room for more.
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