Soumya Tiwari is an Indian cricketer, who plays for the Indian women’s U-19 team primarily as a batting allrounder. A right-hand batsman and right-arm off-break bowler, Soumya Tiwari was a part of the Indian squad that defeated England Women in the finals to win the inaugural Women’s U-19 T20 World Cup on 29 January 2023.
Soumya Manish Tiwari was born on Friday, 11 March 2005 (age 18 years; as of 2023) in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh. Her zodiac sign is Pisces. As of 2023, Soumya is pursuing class 12 at St. Joseph’s Co-Ed School, Bhopal. Inclined toward sports from a young age, Soumya grew up playing cricket with a thaapi thapki (wooden stick used to wash clothes under a tap) and paper balls. Living in a joint family at their Shahjahanabad residence in Old Bhopal, Soumya would often watch cricket on television as a kid. Soon, the thaapi thapki was replaced with a plastic bat and Soumya started playing mohalla cricket with the boys in her locality. According to her father, many times Soumya would come back home complaining about the boys who refused to include her in their teams. Later, her family shifted to Gautam Nagar, New Bhopal, where Soumya began playing cricket at a ground. After noticing her passion towards the sport, her elder sister took her to the Arera Cricket Academy at Old Campion ground in Bhopal for coaching. Suresh Chainani, the cricket coach at the academy, who was wary of girls dropping out, refused to train Soumya. Disappointed with the coach’s refusal, Soumya constantly cried for two days and later, went to the academy again, requesting the coach to take her in. The coach finally agreed to train her during the summer break. Soumya was 11 years old at that time. The coach initially groomed Soumya as an off-spinner before training her at batting.
Meanwhile, an inter-club match was organised at the academy, where Soumya got the opportunity to showcase her fielding abilities. She performed extremely well in the match, taking two catches in the game. For the first three years, Soumya trained at the academy with boys. Eventually, she caught the attention of the state selectors, who included her in the Madhya Pradesh U-23 team at the age of 13.
Height (approx.): 5′ 3″
Hair Colour: Black
Eye Colour: Black
Parents & Siblings
Soumya Tiwari’s father, Manish Tiwari, is a state government employee who works as an election supervisor at the Bhopal Collectorate. Her father used to play local division cricket in his younger days. Soumya’s mother, Bharti Tiwari, is a homemaker. She has an elder sister, Sakshi Tiwari.
Soumya Tiwari started playing for Madhya Pradesh Women in age group cricket at the age of 13. Before getting selected in the state U19 team, Tiwari went for the trials conducted by Bhopal’s senior division. Tiwari played her first cricket tournament in Gwalior. For a brief period, Soumya also captained the U-16 Madhya Pradesh women’s team. In 2020-2021, Soumya played for Madhya Pradesh Women in the Senior Challenger tournament. She has played in two Challenger tournaments for the Madhya Pradesh U19 team. In 2022, Soumya was a part of the Madhya Pradesh U19 Women’s team that won the T20 domestic tournament. She has been the captain of the Madhya Pradesh U19 team in the ZCA and Challenger Trophy matches.
In 2022, Soumya Tiwari was named in India A women’s squad for the quadrangular series that also featured India B, West Indies, and Sri Lanka. Soumya was the only player from Madhya Pradesh to make it to the series. In 2023, Soumya was named in the Indian U19 squad to represent India at the inaugural Women’s U-19 T20 World Cup. She was made the vice-captain of the team. During the tournament, she scored an unbeaten 28 off 15 balls against Sri Lanka. In the semi-finals, Tiwari scored 22 runs against New Zealand. In the finals, chasing a 69-run target set by England, India’s opening batsman Shefali Verma and Shweta Sehrawat lost their wickets early. It was Soumya who scored the winning runs for India, scoring 24 runs off 37 balls. Soumya partnered with Gongadi Trisha to compose a partnership of 46 runs.
- In her leisure time, Soumya loves to do sketching and painting. She is also fond of writing and maintains a personal journal in which notes down every single thing she does on the cricket field.
- Soumya admires the Indian cricketer Virat Kohli so much that her teammates often call her ‘Apni Virat’ and ‘VK.’ She has various posters of Virat in her room. Tiwari is also a huge fan of the Indian cricketer Smriti Mandhana.
- In 2022, Soumya won State’s Best Female Cricketer Award.
- Soumya is very particular about her fitness and follows a strict workout regimen. She works out for around 40 minutes before going to the field to play.
- In an interview, while recollecting an old incident, Soumya’s coach Suresh Chainani said,
We were playing an inter-club tournament and Soumya was the only girl in our team. We batted first and after the first innings, the organiser told us that the girl cannot play in the tournament. I protested as they had allowed on the first hand but refused after our batting as Soumya had made a name for herself as a spinner in the local circuit. She came to me and told me that she will sit out as her team should not be disqualified and they should win. We won the match but her team spirit told us about her love for winning.”