#ChallengeAccepted campaign highlights need for gender equality in cricket
Cricketers like Mithali Raj, Harmanpreet Kaur, Veda Krishnamurthy and Virat Kohli support Royal Challenge Sports Drink’s campaign
Royal Challenge Sports Drink on Wednesday launched #ChallengeAccepted, a campaign that challenges gender-based stereotypes in cricket and spotlights a world of equality that will lead to a better tomorrow both on and off the field.
In the film, Mithali Raj, Harmanpreet Kaur, Veda Krishnamurthy from the Indian women cricket team and Virat Kohli come together to say that ‘A day is coming where the world needs to become equal’ and urges fans to accept the challenge to break the barriers in their mind and to see men and women’s cricket as one game and one team which is not divided by gender.
The campaign challenges the belief that women and men’s cricket are not on par because of the perception that women are not as strong, as fast, or as fit as their male counterparts who rally bigger crowds and fanfare. To break the myth, Royal Challenge Sports Drink has asked people to support the first-ever mixed gender T20 match that the brand will organise with women cricketers and the Royal Challengers Bangalore team.
Voicing his support for the campaign, Virat Kohli says, “Be it men or women, cricket is one game and I want to urge fans to break the boundaries that exist in their mind that divides the sport by gender. Equality in sports is ultimately a reflection of equality in life and if we want a better tomorrow then we need to say #ChallengeAccepted and start breaking down all stereotypes.”
Speaking about the Royal Challenge Sports Drink campaign, Mithali Raj, under whose leadership India has reached World Cup final twice said, “Over the recent years, women’s cricket has made a lot of progress in terms of earning respect from fans and experts but the playing field is still not equal and the true difference are seen when there is parity in opportunities, salaries, coverage and fan support.”
In support of the campaign, Harmanpreet Kaur said, “People say that women and men’s cricket are not equal because we are not able to face the same challenges on field. To all those fans, I want to say that neither does the idea of facing a ball at 150 kmph daunt me, nor do I worry about the size of the stadium while hitting a boundary. The start to making cricket one game will come from fans saying Challenge Accepted and breaking the barriers in their mind.”
Veda Krishnamurthy adds, “If we want a world tomorrow where girls start looking at professional cricket as a real career option then we need to begin to change the game today. If we don’t put women and men cricketers on the same field then fans are not going to see it as one game. Hence, we are saying #ChallengeAccepted and asking the nation to support the mixed gender match that Royal Challenge Sports Drink is planning.”
Talking about the campaign, Amarpreet Anand, Executive Vice President & Portfolio Head, Diageo India, says, “With #ChallengeAccepted, the idea is to challenge stereotypes in life, because bold are the ones who are fearless to do so. Our first point of view is to challenge gender stereotypes in cricket, where the game is being divided by gender, not skills and prowess. We believe that it’s a cause worthy of a conversation in culture and we are supporting the first mixed gender match with international cricketers. We are rolling out a full 360-degree activation plan supported by like-minded influencers & the RCB cricket team.”
Vishnu Srivastav - Creative Head at DDB Mudra South and East adds, “Royal Challenge as a brand has always stood for forward thinking and boldness. It has stood for the spirit of challenging the ‘now’. So, when it came to this campaign with the euphoria linked to the cricket season we wanted to talk about what’s missing in all this excitement – Women Cricketers. We wanted to create a campaign that challenges the world to move towards a more progressive and inclusive space for women, in sports and life. And we’re just getting started.”
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