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Chakda Xpress Teaser: Anushka Sharma stars as cricketer Jhulan Goswami.

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Bollywood actress Anushka Sharma is soon going to appear in films once again. The actress, on Thursday shared the first look teaser of her new project – Chakda Xpress, a biopic on the former captain of India national women’s cricket team Jhulan Goswami. Anushka will be taking up the trailblazing cricketer’s role in the film which will mark her return to acting after a break of three years.

The film is based on the life of former Indian cricket captain Jhulan Goswami. Hailing from West Bengal’s Chakdaha town, Goswami, 39, has a long list of accomplishments to her credit. A fast bowler, Goswami holds the world record for the highest number of wickets in an international career that spanned 2002-2021. The film traces her inspirational journey as she moves up the ladder despite the hindrances posed by misogynistic politics to fulfil her dream of playing cricket for India. Goswami succeeded in her goal and went on to captain the Indian women’s national cricket team and is a role model for aspiring cricketers in the country. Goswami has been honoured with the Padma Shri, Arjuna Award and the ICC Women’s Cricketer award.

“It is a really special film because it is essentially a story of tremendous sacrifice,” she wrote while sharing the teaser of the Netflix movie on her Instagram handle. In the first look Anushka can be seen leading her team to a cricket field, wearing jerseys with slips of their own names slapped on the male cricketers’ names, as she makes a promise – “Today, you see us. Tomorrow, you’ll remember our names.”

“At a time when Jhulan decided to become a cricketer and make her country proud on the global stage, it was very tough for women to even think of playing the sport. This film is a dramatic retelling of several instances that shaped her life and also women’s cricket,” the actor said, calling the film “an underdog story” in the history of Indian cricket.

“From support systems, to facilities, to having a stable income from playing the game, to even having a future in cricket – very little propelled women of India to take up cricket as a profession. Jhulan had a fighting and extremely uncertain cricketing career and she stayed motivated to make her country proud. She strived to change the stereotype that women can’t make a career out of playing cricket in India so that the next generation of girls had a better playing field. Her life is a living testimony that passion and perseverance triumphs over any or all adversities and Chakda Xpress is the most definitive look into the not so rosy world of women’s cricket back then. There is still a lot of work to be done and we have to empower them with the best so that the sport can flourish for women in India,” Anushka added.

Chakda Xpress
Anushka Sharma in Chakda Xpress

Goswami also spoke about the challenges she faced in her career at a time when the prevailing notion was that “women can’t play cricket”.

“It doesn’t matter if sometimes a man’s accomplishments are placed above your own. It doesn’t matter if the stadiums are empty. When you pull up on to the pitch to bowl, all you see is the opponent holding the cricket bat and the stumps you need to knock out,” 

“Team India is not just the roaring sound of 1.3 billion voices cheering and praying. Sometimes, it is one girl from Chakda playing a game of cricket with her team shaking, screaming for, and rising together when the stumps are finally knocked out,” she added.

The all-rounder said, “Chakda Xpress is now filming. Meet you on the field.”

Chakda Xpress will be shot in India and the U.K. and will be produced by Anushka Sharma and Karnesh Ssharma’s Clean Slate Filmz (NH10, Pari). Prosit Roy of Paatal Lok fame will direct the film. It will be the second Netflix film for Clean Slate Filmz after Bulbbul (2020).

Karnesh Ssharma of Clean Slate Filmz said: “In India, cricket is not just a sport, but an emotion. We at Clean Slate Filmz are dedicated to bringing the best of stories and ‘Chakda Xpress is one such unique story. [After] the positive response that ‘Bulbbul’ received and how far it travelled, I am thrilled to partner with Netflix again as this is a story that can resonate with the audiences worldwide.”

Pratiksha Rao, director, films and licensing, Netflix India, said: “The journey of Jhulan Goswami, while deeply inspiring, is also painfully astounding in revealing the many odds she encountered; and ‘Chakda Xpress’ is the story of her achievements in spite of those challenges.

Anushka Sharma was last seen on the silver screen in 2018 in Anand.L.Rai’s Zero along side Shah Rukh Khan and Katrina Kaif. She is married to cricketer Virat Kohli. The couple have a daughter, 11-month-old Vamika.

Also Read: Deepika Padukone shares new posters of ‘Gehraiyaan’ on her birthday

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