The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is leaving no stone unturned to make the inaugural edition of the Women’s Premier League (WPL) a huge success.
Last month, the board announced the five successful bidders for the WPL after it confirmed that Viacom 18 had committed INR 951 crore to bag the media rights of the tournament for a period of five years (2023-27).
On Monday (February 13), the BCCI conducted the inaugural WPL auction that took the cricketing world by storm.
A day after the auction, BCCI Secretary Jay Shah said the Women's Premier League will set a template for other sports to follow suit, just like it happened with the Indian Premier League.
"The WPL is going to revolutionise the way we look at women's cricket. The huge success of the WPL auction has not only given an opportunity to many prospective talent to showcase their skills on the big stage but also to young budding cricketers to take centerstage on a global level. The reception from fans around the world has been overwhelmingly positive and this will only continue to grow as the league matures. The WPL will set a template for other sports to follow suit. We saw what happened with the men's IPL and how other sporting leagues cropped up after 2008. The WPL will ensure the growth of multi-genre sport among women," Shah told ANI.
As many as 409 players were up for grabs at the auction as five teams - Delhi Capitals, Gujarat Giants, Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore and UP Warriorz - formed their squad ahead of the tournament’s first edition.
"Without a ball being bowled, the WPL is the largest sporting league. With women's cricket well on its way to cement itself in mainstream sports, the WPL will only fortify the ecosystem around women's cricket. The initial response to the WPL has definitely showcased the potential the league has to become the biggest women's domestic sporting tournament," added Shah.
The inaugural edition of the Women's Premier League is slated to be held in Mumbai from March 4 to 26. A total of 22 matches will be played at the Brabourne Stadium and DY Patil Stadium.
Here are the squads of five WPL teams:
Delhi Capitals: Jemimah Rodrigues, Meg Lanning, Shafali Verma, Radha Yadav, Shikha Pandey, Marizanne Kapp, Titas Sadhu, Alice Capsey, Tara Norris, Laura Harris, Jasia Akhtar, Minnu Mani, Poonam Yadav, Taniya Bhatia. Jess Jonassen, Sneha Deepthi, Arundhati Reddy, Aparna Mondal.
Gujarat Giants: Ashleigh Gardner, Beth Mooney, Sophia Dunkley, Annabel Sutherland, Harleen Deol, Deandra Dottin, Sneh Rana, S Meghana, Georgia Wareham, Mansi Joshi, Dayalan Hemalatha, Monica Patel, Tanuja Kanwer, Sushma Verma, Hurley Gala, Ashwani Kumari, Parunika Sisodia, Shabman Shakil.
Mumbai Indians: Harmanpreet Kaur, Nat Sciver-Brunt, Amelia Kerr, Pooja Vastrakar, Yastika Bhatia, Heather Graham, Issy Wong, Amanjot Kaur, Dhara Gujjar, Saika Ishaque, Hayley Matthews, Chloe Tryon, Priyanka Bala, Humairaa Kaazi, Neelam Bisht, Jintamani Kalita, Sonam Yadav.
Royal Challengers Bangalore: Smriti Mandhana, Sophie Devine, Ellyse Perry, Renuka Singh, Richa Ghosh, Indrani Roy, Disha Kasat, Shreyanka Patil, Kanika Ahuja, Asha Shobhana, Erin Burns, Heather Knight, Dane van Niekerk, Preeti Bose, Poonam Khemnar, Komal Zanzad, Megan Schutt, Sahana Pawar.
UP Warriorz: Sophie Ecclestone, Deepti Sharma, Tahlia McGrath, Shabnim Ismail, Alyssa Healy, Anjali Sarvani, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Parshavi Chopra, Shweta Sehrawat, S Yashasri, Kiran Navgire, Grace Harris, Devika Vaidya, Lauren Bell, Laxmi Yadav, Simran Shaikh.
(With ANI Inputs)