The 12th edition of Indian Premier League has started with a bang which included nail-biting games to controversy. However, in between the campaign, Royal Challenge Sports Drink has launched a new campaign, named #ChallengeAccepted, with an aim to break the gender-based stereotypes in cricket both on and off the field.
Moreover, the idea is to challenge the thinking that women’s cricket isn’t the same as men’s cricket and they are all set to organize the first ever mixed gender T20 match where the women cricketers and the Royal Challengers Bangalore team will be involved.
However, India captain Virat Kohli has backed the move, said, “Be it men or women, cricket is one game and I want to urge the fans to break the boundaries that exist in their mind that divides the sport by gender. Equality in sports is ultimately a reflection of equality in life and if we want a better tomorrow then we need to say #ChallengeAccepted and start breaking down all stereotypes.”
Along with Virat Kohli, Indian Women’s cricket team have also supported the campaign.
If we are quiet, who’s going to change the world? Let’s break stereotypes, let’s strive for a world that is equal. I’m joining hands with @rcgameforlife to say #ChallengeAccepted. Vote now and show your support for the first ever mixed-gender T20 match: https://t.co/VKvKrXzf7H pic.twitter.com/e8Z9DoKgea
— Mithali Raj (@M_Raj03) April 2, 2019
“Over the recent years, women’s cricket has made a lot of progress in terms of earning respect from fans and experts but the playing field is still not equal and the true difference are seen when there is parity in opportunities, salaries, coverage and fan support,” said Mithali Raj, the captain of Indian Women’s Cricket team.
It’s time to shatter all the stereotypes when it comes to women’s sport. That is exactly why I’m joining hands with @rcgameforlife and saying #ChallengeAccepted. Let's show our support for the first ever mixed-gender T20 match: https://t.co/dclgVmwL1N. pic.twitter.com/F9tHGpJ9Wz
— Harmanpreet Kaur (@ImHarmanpreet) April 2, 2019
“People say that women and men’s cricket is not equal because we are not able to face the same challenges on-field. To all those fans, I want to say that neither does the idea of facing a ball at 150 kmph daunt me, nor do I worry about the size of the stadium while hitting a boundary. The start to making cricket one game will come from fans saying Challenge Accepted and breaking the barriers in their mind,” said India T20 captain Harmanpreet Kaur.
This is the perfect time to change the game and when there is a challenge around, I'm always saying ‘Accepted’. I’m teaming up with @rcgameforlife for the first ever mixed-gender T20 match. Are you game? https://t.co/4wbKO3OJGS #ChallengeAccepted @rcgameforlife pic.twitter.com/PBPdUZiPAW
— Veda Krishnamurthy (@vedakmurthy08) April 2, 2019
One of best fielders of India and destructive batters, Veda Krishnamurthy too has appreciated the move, saying, “If we want a world tomorrow where girls start looking at professional cricket as a real career option then we need to begin to change the game today. If we don’t put women and men cricketers on the same field then fans are not going to see it as one game, hence we are saying #ChallengeAccepted and asking the nation to support the mixed gender match.”