India had missed out on winning their maiden Women's World Cup title in 2005 when they suffered a 98-run defeat to Australia in the final at the Centurion. 12 years later India beat Australia in the semi-finals to reach the final of the mega event for the second time. The Women in Blue will face hosts England on Sunday at Lord's in the final of the 2017 edition of the tournament. As the final approaches, many former players will be watching it on television and some will be in commentary boxes or studios. But, they will all be cheering for two cricketers who are possibly playing their last World Cup - Mithali Raj and Jhulan Goswami. Both aged 34, they are the only players in the India squad who had played the 2005 final.
For Mithali and Jhulan, Sunday's match is possibly their last chance to win a World Cup and the experienced duo will aim to sign off on a high.
"For me and Jhulan it is very special because we are the only players from 2005 still with the team and for us it feels like going back to 2005," said Mithali in a pre-match press conference. "We are all very excited to be part of the World Cup final. We knew this tournament wasn't going to be easy but the girls have turned up at every situation when the team needed (them to)."
India reached this year's final with a stunning 36-run semi-final win over Australia at Derby on Thursday, featuring a stunning 171 not out from Harmanpreet Kaur.
"I'm so happy that the girls have given us an opportunity again to be part of the World Cup final." Mithali said. She had also led India in the 2005 final.
"It definitely is not going to be easy for England, but having beaten Australia, I am sure the girls are on a high but it will boil down to how we perform on the day. Playing the hosts in their own country is going to be a challenge but this unit is up for it," the Indian captain added.
(With AFP inputs)