'I am the naughtiest in the team': Indian cricketer Jemimah Rodrigues

In an exclusive interview with The Free Press Journal, Indian Cricketer Jemimah Rodrigues talked about dressing room music, pranks, favorite food, and her cricketing journey so far.

Shubham BhargavUpdated: Wednesday, June 02, 2021, 04:42 PM IST
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Jemimah Rodrigues | File Picture

Q. How are you keeping yourself physically fit during the lockdown?

Actually after the first lockdown last year, I brought a few gym equipments. My house is like a small gym. I discuss with my trainer as to how I can keep myself fit with the equipment I have. I also practice with my dad using a plastic ball at home.

Q. Who is the biggest prankster in the Indian team?

I think I am the naughtiest one in the team. Like I won't harm or hurt anyone but I always engage in fun activities. Harleen (Harleen Deol) and I are often up to something, we don't prank our teammates a lot, but we do keep finding ways to have fun. Moreover, with all the things happening in the world right now, it really takes a toll on your mental health and you end up getting anxious and fearful. So I try to spread joy as much as I can. I am a bubbly person and it makes me really happy if I am able to put a smile on someone's face.

Q. Is there anyone in the team who doesn't enjoy much and is always in the focus mode?

I don't think there is anyone in the team who is like that. Obviously when it comes to practice everyone is in the focus mode, you will see a different Jemi on the field as compared to how I am right now. Apart from that we all have a lot of fun because what's the point of playing if you are not enjoying. I would say Shikha di (Shikha Pandey) is a more nerdy kind of a person as compared to all of us, but when she is in her zone, she also starts cracking jokes. Like one day she'll be like I will play the music for the entire team and everybody enjoys that.

Q. Is there any show which you have started watching during the lockdown?

Honestly, I am not a binge-watcher but this lockdown has compelled me to watch a few shows. I like to hang out with my friends and I love talking, I think you would know that by now, but I started watching 'Suits' as going out was not an option. 'Brooklyn 99' is my all time favorite show and I have rewatched it many times. Recently I watched an animated movie called the 'The Mitchells vs The Machines.'

Q. Do you miss Mumbai street food?

I really miss 'Bhaji Pao,' I am not a big fan of 'Vada Pao' but 'Bhaji Pao' is my absolute favorite. I also like 'Pani Puri,' although I am not a die hard fan of it and I love 'Nutella Pancakes' as well.

Q. Who inspired you to become a cricketer?

I started playing 'Gully Cricket' with the boys when I was 4 years old. My basic inspiration at that time was the sport itself because I didn't have the kind of patience to sit down and watch a whole cricket match, I used to run around all the time. Although my brothers used to play cricket and looking at them I picked up the bat and started off.

Q. How challenging it was to become what you are today?

It was very difficult for me from the start, firstly there were no girls who used to practice, secondly the boys were also not open to taking girls in the team, they used to say 'ladki hai, lag jaegi'. It was also difficult to find an academy. I was 9 years old when we went to an academy. I started off as a bowler actually and one day a ball landed on the top of my head and I started crying. After that ,my coach told my brother that we shouldn't get Jemimah. I was heart-broken that day but eventually the love for the sport guided me to where I am today.

(Click on the link below and watch the full interview on our YouTube channel)

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