Chamari Athapaththu, Sophie Day, and Charlie Knott rewarded individual honours at WBBL

The 33-year-old veteran Sri Lankan skipper Chamari Athapaththu, apart from leading the Sri Lankan side to success at the international level, has also made a mark for herself in franchise leagues around the world. She has represented a couple of franchises in WBBL, starting her Women’s Big Bash League career with the Melbourne Renegades in the year 2017. She moved to the Perth Scorchers for the 7th edition of the Women’s Big Bash League in the year 2021.

Chamari Athapaththu, Sophie Day, and Charlie Knott rewarded individual honours at WBBL. PC: Getty
Chamari Athapaththu, Sophie Day, and Charlie Knott rewarded individual honours at WBBL. PC: Getty

This year saw the introduction of the draft for the overseas players. The player selection process took place on 3rd September 2023 in Melbourne. The Sri Lankan skipper and star all-rounder Chamari Athapaththu initially went unpicked in the inaugural overseas draft. However, the Sydney Thunder led by skipper Heather Knight, eventually drafted her into the squad for the 9th edition of the WBBL and repaid the trust by scoring a pile of runs and bagging wickets, resulting in her being awarded as the player of the tournament, edging past Charlie Knott (29) by a vote.

She has scored 552 runs at a strike rate of 127.18 and an astonishing average of 42.46 in 14 innings. Her tally of runs includes five half-centuries. Her best performance with the bat so far this season for the Sydney Thunder came on 26th October 2023 against the Melbourne Renegades, when she scored 80 runs at an impressive strike rate of 148.14. Her tally of runs included 13 boundaries and a couple of maximums. She has also picked up 9 wickets at a strike rate of 23.8 and an average of 27.22 in 14 innings. Her best performance with the ball for the Sydney Thunder this season came on 22nd October 2023, against the Sydney Sixers which was also their first game of the season. She returned with the match-winning figures of 3/20 in her spell.

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The 25-year-old left-arm spinner Sophie Day had a breakthrough season while representing the Melbourne Stars in the Women’s Big Bash League this year. She picked up 27 wickets at an impressive strike rate of 10.88 and an average of 12.48 in 14 innings. Her best performance with the ball for the Melbourne Stars came on 8th November 2023 against the Sydney Sixers. She returned with the match figures of 5/25 in her spell. She is currently the leading wicket-taker of the tournament.

She has been awarded as the golden arm of the tournament. It has been her career-best campaign in her Women’s Big Bash League career so far. Even though her side Melbourne Stars ended in the bottom half of the table, she was one of the biggest positives for the Melbourne Stars this season.

The young 20-year-old all-rounder Charlie Knott representing the Brisbane Heat is having a good season for the Brisbane Heat scoring 231 runs at a strike rate of 140 and an average of 19.25 in 15 innings with the bat for the Brisbane Heat so far. She has picked up 10 wickets at a strike rate of 21 and an average of 26.90 in 15 innings with the ball so far for the Brisbane Heat. For her brilliant all-round display for the Brisbane Heat, she has been awarded as the Young Gun of the Tournament for the ongoing 9th edition of the WBBL.

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The winner of the eliminator Brisbane Heat will face the 2nd placed side ie. the Perth Scorchers in the Challenger and the winner of the Challenger will face the defending champions Adelaide Strikers in the final in Adelaide on 2nd December 2023.

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