Trials for women cricketers in Pakistan under the able aegis of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) will kick start from May 12. The nationwide trials will be conducted for U19 (born on or after September 1, 2003), Emerging (between 19 and 24 years of age) and Senior (between 25 and 28 years of age) players. The six cricket associations that will host the trials are, Balochistan, Sindh, Southern Punjab, Central Punjab, Northern and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Such nationwide trials will aid the PCB to identify the talent across Pakistan and form a pool of potential players who can represent the country in the future. The PCB aims to have 100 women cricketers taking part in the 2022-23 domestic season and these trials will certainly help their cause.
Pakistan women’s cricket team head coach David Hemp feels that the upcoming programme will assist in exploring more and more players. If Pakistan gets a good crop of players then they can have a strong chance of performing well at the ICC events. At present, teams such as Australia and England that are doing well at the ICC events boast of an established domestic structure. In an attempt to follow the footsteps of such behemoths, PCB has initiated this nationwide trial for women cricketers.
Hemp said, “Behind the scenes, as you know, the trials are going ahead to develop a different type of group of players so we have a stronger domestic system. Once that is in place, you’ll see a shift in fortunes, I believe, because more competition for places drives standards and expectations. Once the trials are complete, any new talent and players who are out there we feel are good enough to be invited to the camp.”
The New Zealander understands that there is a lot of work that needs to undergo as far as the Pakistan women’s cricket team is concerned. In the recently concluded ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup, Pakistan had a dismal outing as they won just one out of their seven matches. Hemp reflected on the World Cup and said, “Losses in the World Cup to South Africa and Bangladesh, two games that we got in really strong positions and we should have won. That’s been a bit of a pattern, which we’re addressing as often as we can when we get into these camps.”
From the Pakistan point of view, it is important that they move on from their World Cup performance and focus on the year ahead. Pakistan have three assignments in the pipeline. First, they will host Sri Lanka from May 24 to June 5 for a three-match ODI and three-match T20I series. Second, they will travel to Ireland to play a tri-series from July 16 to July 24. Australia will be the third team alongside Pakistan and Ireland. And third, they will feature in the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham from July 29 to August 7.
The quotes are sourced from Dawn
I am a former cricketer having represented Mumbai University at All India University level. I was a part of MCA probables for the U-19 and U-23 age group. I have been an avid cricket writer for the last five years. Currently I am pursuing my Ph.D from IIT Bombay.