Want to be a professional cricketer?
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is planning to organise Women’s IPL exhibition matches during the playoffs of IPL 2019.
In the last year, BCCI took that initiative for the first time. During the IPL 2018, IPL Trailblazers and IPL Supernovas played one-off Women’s T20 challenge. BCCI organised that match on 22 May 2018, ahead of the Qualifier 1 match of IPL 2018. Smriti Mandhana led IPL Trailblazers while Harmanpreet Kaur led IPL Supernovas. Also, some English, Australian and New Zealand women also participated in that game. IPL Supernovas won that thrilling match by three wickets on the last ball of the game.
Now, the BCCI is planning to organise it once again, and that too is in a bigger way. Once again, the BCCI is likely to organise it during the IPL Play-offs.
A BCCI official told PTI on Monday (25 February), “Like last year, the sole window we have is during the play-offs. But a lot depends on the election dates.”
The new timing of the Women’s games
The last year’s Women’s T20 challenge was played at 2:00 pm. But that initiative failed to create the hopeful buzz. Observing that, the BCCI is now planning to organise it at 7:00 pm on the non-match days in IPL 2019. The BCCI official feels that it makes more sense than organising these matches in the afternoon times. They are waiting for the full schedule of the general elections. Once the Election Commission of India announces the general elections’ schedules, the BCCI will soon finalise the schedule for the women’s games.
The official added, “We are waiting for the Election Commission of India to announce the full schedule of the general elections and once that happens, we will finalise the schedule for the women’s games.
“A 7 PM start on days when the IPL games are not held makes more sense than staging them in the afternoon when not many people are likely to turn up again.”
The BCCI has two different plans for the Women’s games. Either it can be the three teams contest, including a grand final, or it can be the best of three matches contest between two teams. According to the BCCI official, the two teams’ idea is more acceptable at this moment.
The BCCI official said, “Logistically and even considering the players’ pool we have, the best of three games between two teams seems a lot more doable than forming three teams. The quality of the competition can’t be compromised and that is one of the reasons why a women’s IPL can’t be organised at the moment.”
On the other hand, IPL 2019 will begin on 23 March. Recently, the governing body has announced the fixtures of the first 17 games of IPL 2019.