Women’s Cricket Getting a Boost
Women’s cricket in Australia, and the world for that matter, can hardly be described as having experienced a rapid rise. When considering that the 2013 Women’s Cricket World Cup was played in an empty stadium in Mumbai, then the slow and steady climb over the last few years is certainly not anything to be smirked at.
We are after all on the precipice of Australia facing England in a month-long series of everything from ODI’s to Tests to T20’s, in other words, the full Monty. The ICC has made significant financial investments in women’s cricket over the last couple of years too, without which full-on three format cricket for women would most definitely not have even been a possibility.
The recent improvements are not all as a result of better player development. For all the negative attention that it had attracted this year, few fans realise that the Memorandum of Understanding that was reached by Cricket South Africa and the players’ union a couple of months ago, is essentially gender-neutral, with a decent raise in pay for all female players being a decided perk never before enjoyed to the extent that it will be in future. The newly revised MOU will most probably also end up being used as an industry standard in other sports across the board.
Even the commentating landscape is undergoing some important changes, with female commentators being invited to comment on men’s’ games – something that was simply not done in the past.
Beat England Hashtag
The creed of the Australian women’s cricket team is a simple one heading into the summer: beat England! This may prove to be a daunting task, even more so as a result of going into the fight without a captain than the fact that they have set their sights on beating the current world No. 1’s.
The fact that the absent captain is the world’s best batter in the form of Meg Lanning doesn’t really do much to help either.
This having been said, replacement in charge Rachael Haynes is nobody’s second best. However, cricket’s captaincy, especially at national levels, has never been a one (wo)man band. The involvement and input by other senior players will prove invaluable in the quest to stick it to the English.
Alex Blackwell, Ellysse Perry and Alyssa Healy will no doubt be the three pillars of faith driving the wheels of success.
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