The 2018 IPL has moved to its next phase- the playoff stage. The first playoff will be contested between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Chennai Super Kings at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai.
However, before the playoffs commence, a Women's T20 exhibition match will be played at the Wankhede right before the playoff match. Several of the finest female cricketers will be playing this match and for them, this will be the first step in an attempt to start a Women's IPL tournament.
The teams namely, IPL Trailblazers and IPL Supernovas will be led by Smriti Mandhana and Harmanpreet Kaur respectively.
With only a matter of hours to spare before the historical clash commences, let's take a look at 5 players to watch out for in this match.
#5 Suzie Bates
Suzie Bates has been in pretty good form with the bat lately. A fortnight ago, she smashed an impressive 148 for Hampshire against Warwickshire at Basingstoke and was pretty impressive for the Kiwis in their ODI and T20 series against West Indies in March.
Bates does not have a very impressive strike rate in T20Is at 106 but she is the kind of batswoman who can always be relied on. She is also a more than handy bowler.
Hence, the former basketball player will be one of the most crucial players for the IPL Trailblazers in the game and she will be expected to use the most of her all-round abilities.
#4 Smriti Mandhana
The skipper of the IPL Trailblazers Smriti Mandhana has been in pretty good form for India at the moment. The 21-year old produced some really impressive performances with the bat during the Tri-Nation T20 series between India, England and Australia in March.
Mandhana was brilliant during India's ODI series against England last month where she scored 181 runs at an average of 90.5 and was adjudged the Player of the Tournament.
Mandhana will one of the most crucial batswomen for the Trailblazers and she will be looking to score big.
#3 Ellyse Perry
One of the finest female cricketers in the world at present, Ellyse Perry is always an asset to any team she is in and the IPL Supernovas know that they are lucky to have her on their side.
Perry has been in fine form for Australia lately and she has shown some fine performances with both bat and ball for Australia in the past couple of months.
Perry is a very useful middle-order batswoman who can also deliver if sent up the batting order. Of course, she is an extremely lethal bowler who can be a nightmare to any batting lineup.
Hence, the Supernovas will be relying on Perry a lot during the game.
#2 Megan Schutt
Megan Schutt has been in terrific form for Australia for quite some time. She produced some decent performances with the ball during Australia's ODI series against India in early March.
Schutt produced some phenomenal performances with the ball a few weeks later during the Tri-Nations T20 tournament, picking up 9 wickets including a spell of 3/14 in the final against England. Schutt's performances with the ball resulted in her being adjudged the Player of the Tournament.
The 25-year old will be Supernovas' bowling spearhead and she will be expected to pick up some early wickets to exert pressure on the Trailblazers' batswomen.
#1 Meg Lanning
Australian Women's Team skipper Meg Lanning is a talismanic figure for the IPL Supernovas as she has been good with the bat lately.
Lanning produced some fine batting performances for Australia during the Tri-Nation tournament and they came in crucial situations.
In the final against England, Lanning smashed 88 from just 45 deliveries which took Australia to a mammoth 209. Australia won the match easily and Lanning was declared the Player of the Match.
The 26-year old will be a very crucial player for the Supernovas in the game and her team would be expecting her to deliver.