Empowering Women Through Sports – Bhutan’s Women Cricket Team

Sports can be one of the most encouraging forces to amplify women’s voices globally as well as help bring down stereotypical gender barriers and discrimination in its various forms. 

Women in sports defy the misperception that women are weaker, dainty and aren’t for rigorous physical activities. 

There is ample evidence, throughout history, across the world that participation in sports can help break down gender stereotypes, improve girls’ and women’s self-esteem and contribute to the development of leadership skills and provide an equal platform for women to establish their physical prowess.

In one of the latest developments in the sports sector in Bhutan, Bhutan B Women won by 10 runs against Bhutan A Women in the opening game of the Women’s T20 National Championship at the Gelephu International Cricket ground on January 17, 2023.

After a hiatus of four years, the national women’s cricket tournament returned this year with a great spectacle. The last women’s national tournament was played in the 2018 Bhutan Cricket Council Board (BCCB) Women’s T20 championship at Pelkhil Oval in Thimphu.

The Women’s T20 National Championship is a momentous event as it only features two teams. Unlike any tournaments played in the country, the Women’s T20 National Championship features Bhutan A Women and Bhutan B Women.

Prominent cricketers Anju Gurung is leading team A and Dechen Wangmo is the captain of team B. Both team captains are also members of the Bhutan Women’s National Cricket team.

Even though the Bhutan Cricket Council Board, the board that organises the National Women’s Cricket Team of Bhutan, was a member of the International Cricket Council (ICC) SINCE 2001, the Bhutan National Women’s Cricket Team made its debut in the international class only in 2009 when it played against Qatar at the ACC Women’s Twenty20 Championship in Malaysia.

The team won its first match against Qatar, another debutant that year, by 42 runs.

In April 2018, the ICC granted full Women’s Twenty20 International (WT20I) status to all its members. Therefore, all Twenty20 matches played between Bhutan women and another international side after 1 July 2018 will be a full WT20I.

The team has played just four matches after it was granted full Women’s T20 International status by the ICC owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. These four matches were played against Hong Kong, Indonesia, Myanmar, and Thailand between January 13 to January 16, 2019.

Bhutan lost all four of the matches and consequently, as of yet, their international win rate is pointed at zero.

Bhutan made her Twenty20 International debut in Bangkok on January 12, 2019, against Hong Kong at the 2019 Thailand Women’s T20 Smash.

With Yeshey Choden as the captain, the Bhutan National Women’s Cricket team comprises Tashi Cheki, Ngawang Choden, Sonam Choden, Karma Dema, Anju Gurung, Sonam Paldon, Karma Samten, Pema Seldon, Dechen Wangmo, Yeshey Wangmo, Tshering Yangchen, Eva Somsel Yangzom and Tshering Zangmo.

One of the most eminent names in Bhutanese Cricket is that of Anju Gurung, the first female cricketer from Bhutan to travel for an official tournament. She was selected for team Falcons which participated in the Fair Break Tournament held in Dubai from May 1 to May 15 last year (2022).

The scores and records do not define the calibre and the talent the women in the team possess. Nicknamed the ‘Lady Dragons’, the Bhutan Women’s National Cricket Team is a product of perseverance, adherence and determination.

With every path that the Bhutan National Women’s Cricket team or the ‘Lady Dragons’ decide to tread on, they are not only empowering many young girls but are also representing Bhutan as a powerful nation in the global domain consisting of fierce females.

Related Posts