Why is 2023 special for Women’s Cricket?

2022 has yet again proven why women’s cricket is headed in the right direction and with 2023 beckoning, the belief and excitement only gets stronger.

Crowd at DY Patil Stadium during 2nd T20I between India and Australia Women. PC: BCCI
Crowd at DY Patil Stadium during 2nd T20I between India and Australia Women. PC: BCCI

 

Earlier this year with the announcement of the ICC’s Future Tours and Programmes (FTP) schedule, in addition to the ICC events, a total of 301 games (seven Tests, 135 ODIs, and 159 T20Is) will be played during the season (two T20 World Cups and ODI World Cup in 2025) will be played in the 2022-25 time span with 2023 taking center stage.

What are the major events to look forward to this year?

ICC Women’s U-19 T20 World Cup 2023

ICC Women's U19 T20 World Cup Trophy Launched. PC: ICC
ICC Women’s U19 T20 World Cup Trophy Launched. PC: ICC

 

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ICC Women’s U19 T20 World Cup had been long-planned to hold its maiden tournament in 2023. Four venues in South Africa’s Benoni and Potchefstroom will host 16 teams for 41 matches. The World Cup will welcome the likes of Rwanda and Indonesia to mainstream cricket which will be a pleasing sight. The event will provide the young girls with the chance to develop on a stage and show off their talent in front of an audience that is constantly looking for the next big cricket star to nurture and hone their talents.

For all the latest news and updates around U19 Women’s World Cup, click here

ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2023

After the 2018 tournament in the West Indies, which Australia won without any major surprises, the T20 World Cup in 2020 saw them winning yet again win, so the goal for the other teams will be to shock them and avert the inevitable. The ICC Women’s T20 World Cup is scheduled to take place from 10th February to 26 February 2023 in South Africa. It has sent all the fans into a tizzy and with the top eight teams in India, Australia, England, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, West Indies, Ireland, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh fighting it off, it will be quite the event to look forward to.

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The inaugural Women’s IPL

Open Bidding Process for Teams and Draft System for Players expected for Women's IPL 2023. PC: Getty Images
Open Bidding Process for Teams and Draft System for Players expected for Women’s IPL 2023. PC: Getty Images

 

Many people have long called for a Women’s IPL, but the idea has either been put off or dismissed due to concerns about its financial sustainability or a lack of good, quality players but the past few years have dispelled doubts of that nature. With the BCCI set on conducting it in 2023, many now view the Women’s IPL as one of the major breakthrough events for women’s cricket. Since 47,000 people watched the second T20I between India and Australia at DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai when the Harmanpreet Kaur-led squad won a Super Over and even in general, the crowds thronging the stadium for the series, it was a brilliant sight and with the Women’s IPL becoming a reality with stadiums packed has only made it an exciting proposition. The Indian team has set the stage possible and paved the way for the next revolution in cricket by bringing the Women’s IPL to the world and everyone will be waiting to see what we uncover!

Pakistan’s Women’s T20 Competition

Being hosted around the same time as the Women’s IPL is a T20 Competition being hosted in Rawalpindi, Pakistan. The plan is to have four teams and 12 matches to start off the proceedings. This is certainly a tournament to watch out for as it will expose the unearthed gems from the Pakistan women’s cricket ecosystem!

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The Hundred and the WBBL

The Hundred in England has already become a world-class event and this year will also feature the country’s first-ever women’s player draft this time, in which the teams must select a minimum of four players. The WBBL also has the reputation of being a quality league with a lot of talented Aussies and overseas stars featuring adding value to the league and this year promises to be no different.

Besides franchise tournaments, this year there are a lot of bilateral series to look forward to most notably, England and Australia squaring off in a test, India playing England and later Australia in a test, and how Bangladesh and Ireland getting more matches are all good signs. All the bilateral T20I and the ODI matches in the FTP will count towards team rankings which is important in placing value on all the matches and undoubtedly we can expect riveting contests.

Women’s cricket has made great progress in the last five years and all this was possible because of the sustained efforts and perseverance of the women cricketers and the social media attention, higher revenue, and brand advertising interest generated by the cricketing boards, fans to name a few. In conclusion, women’s cricket will look to carry forward the momentum in 2023, with the growth of talent in front of an ardent world eager for more women’s cricket.

I am a first year postgraduate student pursuing a MA in Media and Communication Studies at Christ University, Bengaluru. I am a podcaster, blogger and an avid cricket fan. When not glued to cricket matches, you can find me submerged in books and thinking about cricket all the time.

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