Twenty 20 Cricket Leagues such as the Indian Premier League, Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL), The Hundred, and several others organized by cricket playing countries across the globe are majorly known for providing a platform for players from different countries to come together to play for a single team i.e., against the players from their own country. This not only creates a friendly environment and a good bonding between the cricket-playing nations but also provides a chance for the emerging talents to showcase their potential and for the experienced ones to improve their game. Of course, with a chance to learn from others and have fun too.
Talking of T20 leagues, while we have a good number of them for Men’s cricket, Women’s cricket has just a handful of them – WBBL by Cricket Australia, The Hundred by the England and Wales Cricket Board, and the T20 Challenge which is just a three teams tournament with a hope to be a full-fledged one very soon by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
Currently, we have the seventh edition of WBBL going on in full swing and if you have followed the games, you might be aware of some talented youngsters making their mark and coming into the spotlight, getting praised from the senior players as well.
One such rising star is the 18-years old Australian Phoebe Litchfield who though is yet to play for the national team, has already made her path to the team a bright one after her outstanding performance for the defending champions, Sydney Thunder.
Litchfield who returned from a long cricketing gap after her state’s lockdown made her stay back from training with her New South Wales Breakers teammates, has scored 220 runs for the team till now in her 10 innings, thus making herself the top run-scorer for the Thunder prior to their Sunday’s victory which made India’s opener Smriti Mandhana occupy the top spot but just with a difference of 14 runs. Mandhana who became the first Indian woman to score a Pink Ball century just last month on the Australian soil itself is all praise for the youngster.
Having been promoted to No. 3 this season after Thunder missed out on two of their key middle-order players Rachael Haynes and Heather Knight, it has been a memorable time for the teenager who became the youngest to score a WBBL half-century in 2019 at the age of 16.
In a report by cricket.com.au, Mandhana praised Litchfield and said, “I’ve been watching her closely. I think she’s exceptional, she’s very young but she has all the shots in her game which is very rare as an 18-year-old.”
“More than that, the way she thinks about the game and the way she approaches it, it’s very refreshing to see.”
Meanwhile, the Sydney Thunders are currently struggling to give the best of their performances as they stand 7th in the points table with 8 points and a poor run rate of -0.414 after having a disappointing start to the season. They definitely need a miracle to make it to the knockout phase from their remaining three matches scheduled for November 17, 19, and 20 against the current top two spot holders and the one below them.