Abisha, 15, also dreams of playing cricket for her country. She wants to be just like Kumar Sangakkara former captain of The Lions, Sri Lanka’s national men’s team.
She loves watching the The Lions on TV and says she’s their biggest fan. However, her school doesn’t have a cricket team, and she can’t often watch the women’s games on TV because its only available on expensive pay TV packages.
"Cricket is always perceived as a men’s
game and not fit for girls in our region."
When the school day is over, Abisha and her friends play cricket at a small ground near their village in Jaffna district, in the north of the country. However, for a long time they didn’t have any equipment, or have anyone to coach them.
“Even though we love playing cricket, we [didn’t] have any facilities,” says Abisha. “[The] cricket bat was borrowed from our neighbours.”
Through a UNICEF sport for development program, Abisha and her friends received training in cricket technique and equipment.
“We got the required resources and knowledge to play cricket and in addition we gained skills on team building, conflict management, motivation and leadership,” says Abisha.
“With that knowledge we formed a small team from our children’s club.”
"I am very proud to say that we
won the Under 15 Cup in Jaffna!"
“Now our small village has gained a reputation for [girls] cricket. I have confidence that I may be able to play for the national women’s team someday.”