Apr 17, 2024 - Sports

Fort Bend teen joins U.S. World Cup cricket team

Fort Bend ISD high schooler Pooja Shah poses with a cricket bat

Pooja Shah debuted internationally in 2023. Photo: Alex Davidson-ICC/ICC via Getty Images

A Fort Bend ISD high schooler won a coveted spot on the women's national cricket team for the upcoming World Cup qualifier tournament.

The big picture: Dulles High School student Pooja Shah, 18, is a rising star in the professional cricket world, having made her international debut in 2023 with the inaugural women's under-19 team in a tournament in South Africa.

Now, she's one of 15 women on the senior team representing the U.S. in the 2024 International Cricket Council Women's T20 World Cup Global Qualifier, which kicks off Friday in Abu Dhabi.

  • Shah earned the spot during a four-day training and selection camp in Florida in March.
  • Her ability to bowl and bat made her a versatile asset to this year's campaign, in which she'll play as a middle-order batter.

The intrigue: Shah started playing competitively in 2020 and was the only girl in the Sugar Land Youth Cricket Club when she began, according to the Fort Bend Independent.

  • She wants to pursue a career in health care as an orthopedic surgeon or a specialist in sports medicine.

State of play: The senior women's team has played in the qualifier twice in its 15-year history but has never made it to the World Cup.

What's next: The team's first competitive tournament match is against Uganda on April 27.

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