New Delhi, July 27: Sports Minister Vijay Goel on Thursday felicitated the Indian women's cricket team for finishing as the runners-up in the just concluded ICC World Cup, saying this will inspire the country's youth to take up sports as a career option.
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After a stunning win against Australia in the World Cup semi-final, India suffered a narrow nine-run loss to hosts England in the final at the Lord's on Sunday.
"From Rio Olympics to Paralympics and in games like hockey, wrestling, badminton, and now the splendid performance in the Women's World Cup, Indian women are leading the way in the international sporting arena. The minister said that the message is clear — Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao and now Beti Khilao," the sports ministry said in a statement.
Welcoming the team, Goel said these players have "inspired youths, especially millions of young women across the country to take up sports as a career".
Reiterating Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision to involve youth in sports, Goel said the idea is "Kheloge to Khiloge (Those who play, they shine)" to develop the overall personality of the youth.
He stated that this performance will also inspire India's football team in the upcoming FIFA U-17 World Cup.
Goel also felicitated the coaches and the support staff for their efforts behind the scenes.
Sharing her experience, captain Mithali Raj appreciated the performance of each member of the team and thanked the Prime Minister and Sports Minister for their encouragement.
Star performers Harmanpreet Kaur and Punam Raut were among the cricketers present on the occasion.