With the 2022-23 edition of the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) now only 30 days away, teams have been busy locking players for the tournament that’s scheduled to run from the 13th of October to the 20th of November. All of the 8 franchises are closing out on confirming their squad and in the process, a few of the best signings are grabbing headlines.
The big latest signing has been that of the International Cricket Council (ICC) ranked no.1 bowler in Twenty20 Internationals (T20I’s), Sophie Ecclestone, is finally set for a Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) debut as Sydney Sixers have announced her signing. It could well be a little hard to digest, but it’s true that Sophie Ecclestone has yet hasn’t featured in the league that’s had 7 seasons go by.
Sophie Ecclestone in WBBL06 (2020) had turned down a contract with the Perth Scorchers citing bubble fatigue and now finally in the 8th edition is set for a debut in Pink with the Sydney Sixers. The 23-year-old, in international fabric for England, has picked up 78 wickets in 58 outings with the best figures of 4/18. She’s got an average of 16.57, a strike rate of 16.5 and an economy rate of 6.00 in the format. On Australian soil, in 12 innings had picked up 18 wickets at an economy rate of just under 6 and has got the best figures of 3/7.
Maiden WBBL Appearance for Sophie Ecclestone
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) September 13, 2022
Sophie Ecclestone the batter too has grown with time. She’s got to 151 runs in 20 innings at an average of 18.87 has been striking well at a rate of 125.83 and has got the highest score of 33*. In the recently concluded, The Hundred she helped Manchester Originals with healthy contributions of 36*, 24* and 20.
The Sydney Sixers this time around will be coached by English legend Charlotte Edwards, who on the signing of Sophie Ecclestone said, “In my opinion, we have recruited the best. She can bowl in all phases of the game; she has the ability to take wickets at crucial times, and she can minimize the run-scoring at all times. I know the WBBL is a competition Sophie wants to play in, and the fact she’s had lots of experience playing in Australia will hold her in good stead.”
Sophie Ecclestone who’s set to join a star-stunned lineup at the Sixers on her signing said, “They (Sydney Sixers) play in my favourite colour (Pink), so that’s a great start. Obviously, they have great players with the likes of (Alyssa) Healy, (Ellyse) Perry and (Ashleigh) Gardner, so I’m really excited about going over and playing with them. It’ll be nice not to have to bowl at them. It’s nice they’ll be on my team for once. I’m excited (to get) to know them and to start training with them and play in the same team.
“It’s been a long time coming (playing in the WBBL). I’ve been meaning to go for a few years now. I’m so excited that, this year, it’s worked out well and I can get over there. I’ve seen a lot of it. A few of the England girls have been over in the past and they’ve loved the competition. I’ll hopefully enjoy myself.”
Sydney Sixers squad so far :
Ellyse Perry (C), Jade Allen, Nicole Bolton, Maitlan Brown, Erin Burns, Stella Campbell, Lauren Cheatle, Sophie Ecclestone, Ash Gardner, Angie Genford, Alyssa Healy.