WOMEN’S GLOBAL CRICKET TO BE EXPANDED

Women’s global cricket tournaments are set to be expanded during the course of the next cycle of events, the ICC has announced on International Women’s Day on Monday, meaning more teams will be competing in the Women’s World Cup and Women’s Twenty/20 World Cup.

Also, a third women’s global tournament, the Women’s Twenty/20 Champions Cup, on paper seemingly resembling the men’s Champions Trophy has been added to the next cycle, which begins in 2023 after the men’s World Cup that year and runs till 2031.

The World Cup will have 10 teams playing 48 matches from 2029 (up from eight teams, and 31 matches, till 2025), the Twenty/20 World Cup will be expanded to 12 teams playing a total of 33 matches from 2026 (up from 10 teams, and 23 matches, till 2024).

The Women’s Twenty/20 Champions Cup is set to take place in 2027 and 2031, with six teams playing 16 matches.

These tournaments are part of 20 global tournaments planned for both men’s and women’s cricket combined in the 2023-31 cycle. Bids for hosting the events will soon be open to the ICC’s member countries.

According to ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney, the revised formats would also mean more teams will be able to compete in and gain vital exposure in the qualification tournaments, the Women’s Championship, World Cup Qualifier and the Twenty/20 Qualifier.

In 2000, the number of competing teams at the Women’s World Cup was fixed at eight, while the Twenty/20 World Cup expanded from eight to 10 teams in 2014.

A crowd of 86,174 saw Australia beat India to win the Women’s Twenty/20 World Cup at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the MCG in Australia last year.