The Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) have announced Team India batter Smriti Mandhana as the captain of their women’s team ahead of the inaugural Women’s Premier League (WPL) season. The left-handed batter was signed in the recent auction held in Mumbai for ₹3.40 crore — the highest price for a player at the 2023 WPL auction.
Prathmesh Mishra, Chairman of the RCB, commented:
“Smriti is central to our Play Bold philosophy and cricketing plans. We have handed her the leadership role, and we are confident that Smriti will lead RCB into greater heights.“
Speaking about her new role as captain, Mandhana said:
“It is such a great feeling to see Virat and Faf speak so much about leading RCB and I would like to thank RCB management for giving me this amazing opportunity. I am looking forward to receiving all the love and support from you fans who I am told are the best in the World. I promise you to give my 100% to lead RCB to success in WPL.“
Faf du Plessis, RCB men’s team captain, stated:
“It’s been a great couple of months for RCB, firstly getting a Women’s Cricket team and then assembling a really strong team. I am very confident that our Women’s team Captain has all the attributes to lead RCB. All the very best Smriti Mandhana, see you at the games.“
Virat Kohli, former RCB captain, added:
“A captain isn’t just a leader of the group but he is someone who creates a culture and carries the legacy forward by earning the respect of everyone around him. Faf did a tremendous job by helping each and every one to grow and excel under his leadership. I thoroughly enjoyed my time playing under him. Now it is time for another No 18 to lead a very special RCB Team in the Women’s Premier League. Go well Smriti, you will have the support of the best team and the best fans in the world.“
Mandhana is one of the most decorated women’s players. Recently, she won the ICC Women’s Cricketer of the Year award for 2022. She is also an Arjuna Award winner, having received the honour in 2018.