BCCI contemplates the idea of a women's T20 league in India
Why should boys have all the fun? If everything falls into place, then the Board of Control for Cricket in India might just launch the women’s T20 league very soon. After giving its consent to the women cricketers to play in Australia’s T20 Women’s Big Bash (WBBL) League, the apex body is mulling over the thoughts to have its own league for the ladies. Surely, that is a great news for all the female cricketers who have always proved their mettle whenever they got a chance to express themselves on the cricket field. After the roaring success of the Indian Premier League for the men, BCCI will definitely look to replicate that success in the women’s version as they are on a mission to promote the women’s game.
Under the newly elected President Anurag Thakur, the apex body has broad plans to aggrandize the stature of the women’s cricket in India. Thakur pointed out, “The BCCI wants to see Indian women cricket grow and become No.1 by 2020. We have asked the Women’s Working Committee to give us recommendations in July for next five years.”
He added, “The idea of coming up with its own T20 league is definitely floating around. If the Women Working Committee recommends to the BCCI about such a league will help our women to grow and become better, we would definitely consider this. We could even come up with our own T20 League for women on the lines of IPL so there could be lots happening on that front.”
The franchises in the WBBL have already started to zero in on some of the promising Indian women cricketers and all-rounder Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana and Veda Krishnamurthy will be the most sought-after Indian players apart from captain Mithali Raj and experienced pacer Jhulan Goswami, reported The Hindustan Times.
The players too are excited about the prospect of a women’s T20 league in India and one of the rising stars Harmanpreet expressed her excitement, “Having an IPL-type of league in India would have been superb, but till the time that doesn’t happen, it would be wonderful to go out and participate in international leagues like the one in Australia. We were in Australia earlier this year playing that series when the first WBBL had just ended. We got to know brilliant stuff about the tournament from Australian cricketers like Meg Lanning and Elysse Perry. We do not get enough cricket to play otherwise, so this would be the best exposure for us.”
Indian Cricketers in demand
Harmanpreet has been excellent in the Indian colours in the shorter formats and during India’s famous triumph in Australia in the T20 series this year, she wowed the crowd with her big-hitting abilities. The General Manager of the Sydney Thunders Nick Cummins, who are also the defending champions, also said, “It’s a fantastic development that the Indians will now be part of WBBL. I don’t think we could call the WBBL the leading women’s T20 league in the world without the Indians in it. The Indian women showed during their last tour to Australia that they have some world-class players and their participation can only make the WBBL better. We have a solo slot for an overseas cricketer and we have an Indian player in mind for that.”
Mandhana and Krishnamurthy too exhibited their batting heroics in Australia and were largely instrumental in India winning the T20 series on that tour. It must be reported that every franchise has two slots for overseas players and they will look to fill that as per their requirements.
It was also reported that Melbourne Stars had contacted Mithali, Jhulan and a few others for the inaugural edition last year but the deals didn’t materialise as the domestic cricket season clashed with the WBBL and also the BCCI then was quite apprehensive about the move.
But now the things have changed for sure.