India and Northern Superchargers batter Jemimah Rodrigues revealed that she deals with criticism on social media by paying no heed to them.
With 241 runs to her name, Rodrigues is currently the highest run-getter in The Hundred, but the 20-year-old was in the firing line prior to the competition, having averaged 9.71 across her last 7 international knocks.
The rotten run of form saw Rodrigues lose her place in the starting XI and be at the receiving end of criticism, and speaking on Sky Sports, the 20-year-old revealed that she dealt with the negativity by staying far away from it.
"For me the best way to handle criticism is to ignore it, not even go online or read stuff because it's difficult when you are doing your best and working hard, nobody knows what you've gone through, the tears, the heartbreaks, the sweat you've put out to be where you are," Rodrigues said while commentating on Sky Sports on Tuesday.
"And someone sitting miles away posting stuff on social media…it's tough, and the way I handled this time to stay away from it as far as possible so I can focus on my game and be in the right headspace."
A batting prodigy, Rodrigues had the world at her feet at just 18, when she amassed 401 runs in the 2019 Kia Super League, but her career took a turn for the worse after the stunning showing in England, with her enduring an extended dry run in international cricket.
Her showing in the ongoing Hundred season is somewhat of a career rejuvenation, and the 20-year-old admitted that he career has thus far been a rollercoaster ride.
"It's been a rollercoaster ride for me, I've had ups and downs. That's what cricket is all about, it teaches you so much, changes you personally not just as a player, as a human being.
"I'm still learning how to find that balance because it's not easy. The last few months were pretty tough but it's good to be back and somewhere it's important to find that balance in cricket,” Rodrigues said.
Rodrigues was a part of the Indian side that reached the World T20 Final in 2020, but, after the heroic showing, the pandemic meant that the Women in Blue went exactly a year without playing any cricket.
The Northern Superchargers batter admitted that the one year she spent in the confines of her home was tough and challenging, but revealed that she used the time at hand to get back to basics.
"It was very difficult [to not play for so long] and sometimes it was annoying because we're so used to living off our suitcases, travelling, going around the world and playing cricket," she said of the extended lockdown.
"The first two months were good because we needed a break and got a lot of time to spend with our family but after that my family was also fed up asking, 'when is Jemimah going (laughs)?' OK, they didn't say that.
"We couldn't wait [to play]. And after that we watched a few matches, like the England and Australia women's teams were playing and we were like, 'when will we get to play?' because there were a lot of [Covid-19] cases in India so it was very tough for us to practice, to get a ground.
"I used to practice in my building in a small lane, with a plastic ball so that the cars wouldn't break. So it was tough times and it taught me a lot and helped me get back to my basics."
In April the BCCI had shelved the Women’s T20 Challenge owing to logistical complications, but Rodrigues, a Supernovas batter, is hoping that the 20-over exhibition tournament will take place alongside the IPL this time around, in the September-October window.
"It's high time we start the women's IPL (Women's T20 Challenge). We all are very excited for it and the BCCI is doing a lot to get it started.
“Hopefully this time it starts soon because it's only going to boost women's cricket in India, and you never know you'll get the likes of Shafali Verma and Richa Ghosh, all these players coming out. Like Shafali made her [India] debut after playing the Women's T20 challenge. So hopefully we'll have the Women's T20 Challenge soon."