Young Indian American cricketer Lisa Ramjit is making strides on the pitch.
The 14-year-old, an eighth grader at Northwest Middle School in Taneytown, Maryland, has been selected to play for the U.S. national women’s cricket team.
On May 20, Ramjit debuted for Team USA, which was playing a three-match ICC Americas Regional Women’s T20 Qualifier in Florida against Canada. According to the Maryland Youth Cricket Association, Ramjit started by “taking the first-ever international T20 wicket in USA women’s cricket history on just her second ball, and then continued to baffle the Canadian players throughout the series, finishing with five wickets taken in 11 overs, while allowing a paltry 30 runs scored against her.”
Ramjit and her team, said the Maryland Youth Cricket Association, now have a few months to prep for the 2019 Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier in Scotland, which begins Aug. 31. Should the U.S. advance, it will compete in the 2020 ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, which will be held in Australia from Feb. 21 - March 8, 2020.
Ramjit began her cricket journey as a 7-year-old playing 11U ball for the Bowie Boys and Girls Club.
In 2017, she became the first Maryland Youth Cricket bowler to take five wickets in a match, and in June 2018, she was among the top run scorers at the Girls Cricket League tournament played at Central Broward Regional Park, according to Usacricketers.com. In October 2018, Ramjit was named best batter at the NYCL Girls tournament.
“As you go through the process, you’re just like, ‘OK, this is a game for me to enjoy,’” Ramjit, who dabbled in ballet and softball before taking up cricket, told The Baltimore Sun. “And then as I started to go to the competitive level, I tried to grow from there and get better and try to do the best I can. So, to be able to represent the country at this age, it is surreal. It’s a feeling of all that you’ve done since you were younger has paid off. It is amazing.”
Cricket, which is India’s most popular sport, has been a lifelong ambition within the Ramjit family, which moved to the U.S. from Guyana but is of Indian descent, said The Baltimore Sun. Ramjit’s mother Liloutie and her father, Satnarine, played the sport in Guyana, where Liloutie told the publication children learn how to hit a ball with a stick “as soon as kids can walk.”
“Cricket is a beautiful sport,” Liloutie told the publication. “No special skills or size or anything is required. It’s just a game that anybody can play and enjoy. So, I knew that when coach Sham (Chotoo) said he was starting a cricket team, I was going to sign up Lisa. It had nothing to do with softball, but I knew that Lisa would be able to play cricket for a longer time.”