Remember all 200 wickets, says Goswami
Calcutta: Wednesday was special for Jhulan Goswami. The seasoned pacer became the first woman cricketer to take 200 ODI wickets. But what made it more memorable for Jhulan was the fact that India romped to a convincing victory over South Africa, defeating them by a massive 178 runs and wrapping up the three-match series 2-0 with a match still to go.
"Whatever milestone you have achieved, it feels good (only) when you are on the winning side. It was important for us to win. The points (India earned two) are important as it is the ICC Women's Championship, a qualifying event for the World Cup. So, more than the 200 wickets, it was important to take the two points from each and every match," Jhulan told bcci.tv.
However, a veteran of many a battle, she said she remembered each and every one of the 200 wickets she has taken over the years.
"I remember each of my 200 wickets, right from the beginning of my international career in 2002," said Jhulan. "Honestly speaking, when I was only three wickets away from being the highest wicket-taker in the world, I was keeping a count. I took a long time to cross that milestone, but this time I was not counting. I was concentrating only on my process. If my process is right, then wickets will follow."
Jhulan was all praise for her teammates who played a part in Wednesday's victory. "It was a very special day for me; more special because we won convincingly.
"We played very good cricket. I am very happy for Smriti (Mandhana), Veda (Krishnamurthy), Harman (Harmanpreet Kaur) for the way they batted. Also, Shikhu (Shikha Pandey), Raja (Rajeshwari Gayakwad), Poonam (Yadav)... everybody took responsibility and performed well. At the end of the day, cricket is a team sport."
Going into the match, Jhulan needed just one more wicket to reach the 200 mark. Asked if she was nervous, she said: "Every match that I play for India, I feel the nerves. I always feel that pressure. And honestly speaking, I have hardly had lunch (between innings breaks) all my life. I can't eat.
"It is added responsibility on me when we are playing big tournaments like this against South Africa. They are a quality side. When we scored 300 plus runs we know that they are going to try and hit, so I was just concentrating on my line. It was important to get early breakthroughs.
"Yes, nerves are always there. I feel it helps you concentrate more."