This is a very unique tale! The Indian women’s cricket team led by Mithali Raj made us proud by reaching the finals of the women’s world cup, only to lose it in the finals. But the girls have earned the notice, attention and respect of many from across the world. Now that the world cup is over, all the childhood stories and interesting anecdotes are coming to the fore, literally. We came to know that Harmanpreet Kaur and Veda Krishnamurthy are the most peppy girls in the dressing room. But the one that we are going to throw light on is very strange.

Punam Raut’s childhood coach Sanjay Gaitonde spilled beans of quite a few things the world never knew of the Indian opener. Gaitonde speaking to DNA said, “I wanted to test her skills and hence, I asked her to go. She went there and stood in line with the other batsmen who were ready to bat. When her turn came, she impressed the selector Anil Muzumdar (father of domestic legend Amol Muzumdar) with her batting.”

“Muzumdar called her and asked her name in order to write it down in the selection list. When she said Punam Raut, Anil was shocked. He asked her what she was doing there as this trial was just for boys,” Gaitonde added.

“Anil then asked me about it, and I told him I just wanted to test her skills. She proved herself,” Gaitonde looked back with a sense of happiness.

“She had come with her father, who was a driver, while her mother was a housewife. Punam had the liking for the game and it was visible after I saw her,” he added

“She had a natural physique of an athlete and had a good ball sense. Hence, I agreed to teach her and she became my first girl student,” said the Mumbai-based coach.

“Since she was the only girl in the academy, I would play her with boys like Rohit. Rohit was 12 while she was 10. They lived in the same area in Borivali,” he concluded.