Ekta Bisht is a veteran Indian left-arm off-spinner in the Indian Women’s Cricket team. Bisht is one of the senior bowlers and an important part of India’s spin attack.
She hails from Uttarakhand’s hill-station-town, Almora. Ekta is the first International player from the state.
She has represented Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh’s State teams before her debut for the National side.
|Full Name||Ekta Bisht|
|Height||5ft 4in (1.63 m)|
|Age||32 years (8 February 1986)|
|International Wickets (ODI, T20)||(79, 50)|
|Major Teams Featured For||India Blue Women, India Women,Uttar Pradesh Women’s team, Uttarakhand’s Women’s team|
Ekta Bisht was born Almora, a small, quaint town of Uttarakhand. Almora is a famous hill station situated at an altitude of 1,642 m. Ekta’s father, Kundan Singh Bisht was a havaldar in the Indian Army. After retiring from the post, he took to selling tea in order to support his family. This was because of the meagre pension of Rs. 1,500 was insufficient to feed the family of 5 (Ekta’ parents and two siblings). He continued to pursue his new profession for over a decade. The tea-stall was modest, but enough to support the family.
Ekta, on the other hand, had started playing cricket when she was just 6-years-old. Like most of her national teammates such as Jhulan Goswami or Harmanpreet Kaur, Ekta would also play among boys in the initial years. Kundan fondly remembers how Ekta had a habit of doing things others could hardly think of.
In fact, according to her family, a copious crowd would gather when she used to play, just to witness a solitary girl play among boys.
Soon the love turned into passion. The family knew about her talent and genuinely felt that she was born to carry Indian jersey. They decided to support her, irrespective of what the cost was. Even though financing her cricketing needs was proving to be uneconomical, her parents never let that aspect harm her performances.
Ekta Bisht, on her part, knew this and would frugally save as much money as she could.
Playing for States
Ekta decided to pursue cricketing full time. In 2006, a 20-year-old Ekta went on to not only represent her state, Uttarakhand but also captain the side. In the three that followed, she played for the neighbouring state Uttar Pradesh’s side from 2007 to 2010. Even after promising performances during her time at the state teams, there was no national call-up, much to the dismay of the young spinner.
Playing for the National side
The long wait came to an end in 2011, when she received a call-up from the national side. Her first match in an Indian jersey, unfortunately, was against one of the toughest women teams in the world – Australia. It was not only a tough match for her but also for the entire team. The Indian side wrapped up their innings after putting up just 62 runs, a target that the Aussies achieved in just 10 overs. Bisht had a poor outing, conceding 19 runs in 2 overs.
On the contrary, she had a much better ODI debut, where she scalped 2 wickets and gave away 32 runs in 10 overs. That was the joint best bowling performance along with Jhulan Goswami (who scalped 2 wickets as well, also giving away 32), but not quite enough to spot the Australians to stop from winning the ODI as well. Nevertheless, the innings played an important role in cementing Ekta’s place in the national side.
In 2012, she took a hat-trick in the ICC Women’s T20, as India were successful in restricting Sri Lanka to only 100 runs.
In December 2017, she was named as one of the players in both the ICC Women’s ODI Team of the Year and the ICC Women’s T20I Team of the Year. She was the only woman named in both squads
ICC Women’s World Cup 2017
5 years down the line and Ekta had already transmuted into a senior and most potent spin attacker of the side. A big frontier for her to cross was the Women’s World Cup in England. As the Indian team progressed into to advanced stages of the competition, they gained more national attention and media recognition than ever. Expectations were at an all-time high.
Bisht became the talk of the town when she clinched 5 wickets against arch-rivals Pakistan in the 3rd group stage match. India won that match by a comfortable 85-runs margin.
Then in the 18th World Cup match against South Africa, she took one wicket and conceded just 31 runs at an economy-rate of 3.10.
Ekta had a big role to play in India’s progress into the final, as the veteran spinner took 9 wickets in 6 games.
Her rich form saw Bisht win a place in the prestigious ICC Women’s ODI Team of the Year as well as the ICC Women’s T20I Team of the Year. Ekta was the only woman cricketer that year to be named in both squads.
She will be next seen in action in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup starting from next month.
Ekta Bisht uses her variations effectively to deceive her opponents. It thus becomes difficult to attack when she is bowling. In the recently concluded Asia Cup final between India and Pakistan, captain Harmanpreet Kaur decided to open the bowling with Ekta. She went on to pick two wickets from her four overs, thus showing versatility and effectiveness.
After her match-winning 5/18 figure against Pakistan in ICC 2017 World Cup she said,
“Irrespective of how the pitch is, my job is to bowl and take wickets”
Ekta Bisht was born on 8th February 1986 in Almora to Kundan Singh Bisht and Tara Bisht. Almora is a hill-station-town situated among the Himalayan range in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. Kundan is a former havaldar with Indian Army. He also owned a tea stall after retiring from his national duty. Ekta also has two siblings – a brother and a sister.
Ekta Bisht is categorized as a grade B player according to BCCI’s latest central contract system. As a result, Bish earns Rs 30 lakhs per annum for featuring in the Indian national side. Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur, Jhulan Goswami, and Mithali Raj, who are all grade A players, bag Rs 50 lakh per annum.
2017 ICC Women’s World Cup Runner-Up
2017 ICC Women’s ODI Team of the Year
2017 ICC Women’s T20I Team of the Year
2017 Khel Ratna (by Uttarakhand government. Her coach Liyakath Ali Khan also won the Dronacharya Award that year.)
Ekta Bisht took a brilliant 5/18, the second best figures for India in ICC Women's World Cup history, to help dismiss Pakistan for just 74 in a 95 run win at #WWC17! #BestOf2017 pic.twitter.com/XlVPAG4YF7
— ICC (@ICC) December 1, 2017
— ICC (@ICC) December 21, 2017
India sneak home against England! Ekta Bisht and Poonam Yadav get the hosts to their target in Nagpur after a lower-order collapse to win by one wicket! What a game! #INDvENG scorecard ➡️ https://t.co/lEgs4uxQfI pic.twitter.com/cwHSLi4JM2
— ICC (@ICC) April 6, 2018
Batting and Fielding Statistics