Shikha Pandey
Shikha Pandey (Image Source: Twitter)

From being an Air Force officer to Indian’s frontline bowler, Shikha Pandey reveals her journey

After winning two back-to-back matches in the ongoing ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, the Indian team is flying high at the moment in Group A. First they conquered the defending champions Australia on Friday (Feb 21), and then it was Bangladesh’s turn who lost the game against Harmanpreet Kaur-led side on Monday (Feb 24).

India’s pace bowler Shikha Pandey, who is the leading wicket-taker (5) in the current WC after Poonam Yadav (7), bowled brilliantly against Bangladesh and Australia and helped her team to win both the contests.


Shikha, while talking to TV presenter Ridhima Pathak, revealed the journey of her career. She said that her passage started just like any other kid in India playing the ‘gully’ format of this game. Shikha said she used to play cricket with boys, and that’s how it all started.

“I started playing cricket at the age of five. I’ve played a lot of ‘gully cricket’ with boys. However, my father, who was a teacher, said you might play cricket but have to concentrate on the study at the same time as it’s really important,” said Shikha.


The ace bowler went on to reveal, that she became a member of the Indian Air Force after completing the engineering and then joined the national cricket team.

“I’ve done engineering, and I’m an officer in the Indian Air Force. I joined the Air Force in 2012, and I took my training as well, and now I happen to be a flying officer, ATC officer. Then in 2014, I debuted for the Indian cricket team,” added Shikha.

The Karimnagar-born also disclosed why she became a pace bowler. Shikha divulged that she used to love watching Test matches, especially in Australia. She said she always ran faster in her early days in order to become a pacer.


“I used to watch Test matches since I was a child. I loved watching Tests in Australia. I remember I used to wake up at 4 am to watch the matches, that’s how much I loved this game,” She added further.

Besides this, she also unveiled a weird story as to how India’s legend Sachin Tendulkar inspired her to become a bowler.

“I liked reading cricket magazines when I was a child, and there I came to know that Sachin Tendulkar wanted to be a medium-pacer, but due to his short height, he couldn’t pursue that. Then I thought, if you (Tendulkar) couldn’t become a pacer, I will become one. So, it’s a weird story,” Shikha signed off.


India’s next game in the prestigious tournament is against New Zealand on Thursday (Feb 27) at Junction Oval in Melbourne.

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Akshat is just another cricket fan who’s grown up watching the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid. Cricket runs in his veins. Cover drive is his favorite sight, and a ball meeting the middle of the bat is his favorite sound. You can write to him at akshat.gaur@crickettimes.com or get in touch with him on linkedin.