Snigdha Paul
Watching an ICC Women’s tournament in 2016 has ignited Snigdha Paul desire to play cricket.

Snigdha Paul a junior at Lebanon Trail High School enjoys softball, learning Taekwondo and is persistent, responsible and bold.

Where and how did you get involved with cricket? Please tell us a bit about yourself. (Such as where you were born and where in the USA you currently reside).
I was born in Lucknow, India. Currently, I am residing in Dallas, Texas. I am a junior at Lebanon Trail High School. The journey to cricket started when I went to watch a warm-up match in Bengaluru of the ICC Women’s T-20 World Cup 2016 between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. It was a maiden experience to see the international players in action from a stone’s throw distance. The desire to play ignited at that very moment.

How important is this tournament (ICC Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup) to you?
The ICC Under-19 Women’s T20 World Cup is the largest platform for me to exhibit my skills. It is a dream to play in such a magnificent event. It will test my skills and raise my learning curve for future matches. Every cricketer dreams about their World Cup debut, and the opportunity to participate within a year of their International Debut is a feeling that can’t be described in words. The tournament is an inaugural one and will increase its prestige. I am incredibly excited to see how this unfolds for my team and me.

What needs to be done to attract more female cricketers in the USA?
Cricket is in its infancy in the United States. Currently, only the kids whose parents ever got associated with the game are taking part. We need to get the local kids to pick up the game. Many efforts are being made to introduce it in middle school, which is a fantastic step for the future. We should have an introductory cricket program not just for kids but, in fact, for any age group. The main idea is to introduce the basics to anyone wanting to try their hands. For example, many people watch me practice indoors with curious eyes. If they have a designated day where they can also try it under the supervision of available coaches, who knows, that might spark an interest in anyone. It’s about generating the awareness that cricket is just another ball game, like baseball or softball. One day when driving around a park, I will see lots of people picking up a cricket bat and hitting the ball far.

What are your plans for a possible professional cricket career?
My plans for a professional cricket career are relatively simple. I want to be drafted by the Women’s Big Bash League and Women’s Indian Premier League while continuing to play for Barbados Royals (Caribbean Premier League). Playing in franchise leagues allows a significant amount of experience with international players.

Who are the people you’ve most enjoyed speaking to and learning the game from so far?
I interacted most with my father. He’s my primary mentor and coach. Since I decided to pick up the sport, he has been around me 24×7. I have been fortunate enough to pick Asif Mujtaba and Shivnarine Chanderpaul’s brains. I have learned most about cricket by watching the Ashes series and listening to the rich analytical cricket commentary, which enhances my thought process and game knowledge.

What milestones do you want to achieve in cricket?
I want to give my absolute best in every match and do anything the team requires. I want my team to win the World Cup, the highest possible milestone. I don’t associate any milestones with records and numbers. Overall, I desire to be considered one of the most stylish and mesmerizing left-handed batters.

How do you spend your time away from cricket?
I listen to music and watch movies to spend time away from cricket. Finding time away from school, softball, and cricket is challenging; therefore, there is not much left to do afterward. I occasionally hang out with my friends and get yelled at for not doing enough.

If you weren’t playing cricket, what other sport would you have been playing?
If I weren’t playing cricket, I would be looking into playing softball for the United States (I have played Varsity for my school since my freshman year) or continuing to learn Taekwondo.

Is there any other domestic or international player that you model your game after?
I model my skills after David Warner, a top-order batter; Pat Cummins, a swing bowler; and Ellyse Perry, an all-rounder. On the mental side, I look at Virat Kohli as he is aggressive and resilient.

How would you describe yourself in three words?
I can describe myself as persistent, responsible, and bold in three words.