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The end of an era: Revisiting the best bowling performances of Jhulan Goswami

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As India stalwart Jhulan Goswami bids farewell to the game, we take a look at some of her best performances on the cricket field.

The 'Chakda Express' has come to a halt.

India legend Jhulan Goswami has decided to hang her boots after the ODI series against England at the iconic Lord's. The storied career that began against England in Chennai comes to an end against the same opposition in London.

Goswami bows out as one of the greatest bowlers to have played the game. No women's player has more ODI wickets than the right-arm pacer. In fact, she is the only player in women's cricket to have breached the 250-wicket mark.

Video CWC22 15 Mar 22
Jhulan Goswami – India's pace-bowling legend | CWC22

In the shortest format, she picked up 56 wickets in 68 games at an economy of 5.45 and in the longest format, she scalped 44 wickets in 12 games. 

However, Goswami's legacy in the game went beyond just mere numbers and stats. In a country known for producing quality spin bowlers, she was a pioneer as a fast bowler in India. She has been credited with almost single-handedly initiating and instilling a culture of fast bowling in Indian women's cricket, and inspiring a generation of players.

As she calls times on her career that lasted more than 20 years, we revisit some of her best performances.

4/16 vs West Indies, Women's Cricket World Cup (2005)

In her very first World Cup, Jhulan Goswami set the stage on fire and was one of the vital cogs in India's road to their first-ever final.

In India's penultimate group stage game in Pretoria, she returned figures of 4/16 to bundle West Indies out for 135. She first broke the opening stand, scalping Nelly Williams early in the innings.

She picked up three more wickets in the death overs, breaking the budding partnership between Verena Felicien and skipper Stephanie Power. She scalped both Power and Debbie-Ann Lewis in the same over, before snaring Felicien in her next. 

India chased down the total with 17 overs and eight wickets to spare and Goswami was rightfully awarded the Player of the Match.

5/33 and 5/45 vs England, second Test (2006)

India travelled to England for an all-format series in 2006. Sandwiched between the two Tests, the first of which ended in a draw, was the ODI series which ended in a 4-0 humiliation for India.

A wounded India struck back in the second Test and won it by five wickets, which was their first win against England in red-ball cricket. At the forefront of the victory was Goswami, who picked up a five-for in each innings.

After making a valuable 18-run contribution with the bat, Goswami ran through England's top three of Caroline Atkins, Laura Newton and Claire Taylor. She then returned and struck at a crucial time to dismiss captain Charlotte Edwards and Laura Marsh. England were bundled out for just 99 as Goswami registered the second five-for of her career, finishing with figures of 5/33 in the innings. 

After being asked to follow on, Edwards led England's fightback with a 178-run partnership with Atkins. Having dismissed Newton earlier, Goswami got the priced scalp of centurion Edwards. The wicket eventually became the turning point of the game as England failed to capitalise on the massive partnership thereafter.

Goswami scalped Jenny Gunn soon and trapped Laura Marsh and Isa Gusa in front of the stumps as England went from 212/2 to 305 all out. 

Albeit with some hiccups, India managed to chase down the target of 98 with five wickets to spare and clinch the Test series 1-0.

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Mithali and Jhulan reflect on India's CWC22 journey and their careers

5/11 vs Australia, fifth T20I (2012)

India were once again at the receiving end of a thrashing – this time in T20Is at home against Australia – and once again it was Jhulan Goswami who saved her side the blushes. With the series already lost 4-0 going into the final match, India only had pride to play for.

The right-arm pacer got India off to a brilliant start by scalping Alyssa Healy and Lisa Sthalekar in the Powerplay. She was well supported by Archana Das, who picked up three wickets to break the back of Australia's innings.

After bowling three overs in the Powerplay, Goswami returned to bowl the penultimate over of the innings. First to go was Ellyse Perry, after which Goswami cleaned up Erin Osborne and Sharon Millanta for ducks.

Her 5/11 was the second five-for by an Indian woman in T20Is and is still the best bowling figures by an Indian bowler in women's T20Is.

Video cwc19 24 Sep 22
How Jhulan Goswami inspired Kainat Imtiaz

6/31 vs New Zealand, sixth match, Quadrangular series (2011) 

Jhulan Goswami was India's lone warrior with the ball in the sixth match of the Quadrangular series against New Zealand. In a match where the White Ferns lost eight wickets, only one wicket was accounted for by the rest of India's bowling attack, while the other was a run-out.

She picked up the wicket of Frances Mackay early, and after Suzie Bates was run-out, Goswami removed Sara McGlashan and Lucy Doolan in quick succession.

She rattled the stumps of Nicola Browne and Kate Ebrahim to finish with a six-wicket haul, her best figures in ODI cricket. Unfortunately, it came in a losing cause as India fell short by 39 runs while chasing 202.

5/16 vs England, fourth ODI (2005)

India completed a 5-0 domination over England in the five-match ODI series at home in 2005. In the fourth ODI, the visitors were reduced to their lowest ever total in ODI history as a Goswami five-wicket haul bowled them out for just 50.

Together with Amita Sharma, Goswami ran through England's top-order as they lost half their side with just 13 runs on board. The right-arm pacer picked up the wickets of openers Charlotte Edwards and Rosalie Birch as well as Arran Brindle.

Brindle and Nicky Shaw were the next victims of Goswami as she completed what was her maiden five-for in ODI cricket. Chasing just 51, the hosts needed less than 15 overs to wrap up the game.

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