Windies Women will tour to Pakistan after nearly 15 years, Stafanie Taylor backs out

Windies Women will tour to Pakistan after nearly 15 years, Stafanie Taylor backs out

After almost 15 years, Windies Women will tour to Pakistan for three-match T20I series which is scheduled to be started from January 31 in Karachi. 


With the return of cricket in the country, it will surely boost Pakistan’s Cricket also. Windies Women were the last non-Asian team who travelled Pakistan in March-April, 2004. There they played a Test and seven-match ODI series. The test match went to draw while Windies Women the seven-match series by 5-2.

This time, they will play three-match ODI series after the completion of the T20I series. The three-match ODI series will be a part of the ICC Women’s Championship (2017-21) which will be played in Dubai on February 7, 9 and 11. West Indies are ranked fourth in the ICC T20I rankings while Pakistan are at seven. In ICC Women’s Championship, Windies Women and Pakistan have played equalled number of matches(9) and are at 5th and 6th place respectively.

The three T20Is will be played on 31 January, 1 and 3 February at the Southend Club (Karachi), following which the two sides will go head to head in three ODIs in Dubai on 7, 9 and 11 February. The first ODI will be played at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium, while the second and third ODIs will be played at the ICC Academy,” a PCB media release said.

This ODI series is going to be the inauguration of the International Cricket to Pakistan, which was irregular after the terrorist attack had happened on the Sri Lankan team bus in March 2009. The last series which was played in the country was a three-match T20I series in 2018 against West Indies. In 2017, Sri Lanka played one T20I and a three-match T20I series against World XI side led by South African captain Faf du Plessis. Prior to that, Zimbabwe played three T20Is and three ODIs in Pakistan in May 2015.

Johnny Grave, the chief executive of Cricket West Indies said that the T20I series is going to be a ‘major step’ that helps the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) ‘bring cricket back home’.

This tour is a further major step for our friends at the PCB to bring their cricket back home,” said Grave. “We are pleased that our players and support staff have recognised this and agreed to play the T20Is in Pakistan.”

“The security plan arranged by the PCB is of exactly the same level that the Windies men’s team had last year and independent security advisors, Eastern Star International (ESI), have confirmed to both the CWI and WIPA that they are satisfied that the risk is manageable and can be mitigated to an acceptable level,” Grave further added.

PCB Chief Operating Officer Subhan Ahmad showed his gratitude with the Windies Cricket Board for their cooperation.

The visit of the West Indies women’s team to Karachi is great news not only for Pakistan cricket but for women’s cricket in general. We are thankful to Cricket West Indies and their players for trusting the PCB and agreeing to play three T20Is in Karachi.”

“The decision of Cricket West Indies endorses our position that Pakistan is as safe and secure as any other country. On behalf of the PCB, I would like to say that we are confident that this tour will go a long way in the complete revival of international cricket in Pakistan,” he said.

However, Windies Captain Stafanie Taylor has backed out of the tour for the security reasons. But she will play the ICC ODI Championship matches against Pakistan which will be played in Dubai. Along with her, Hayley Matthews too will be unavailable for the tour.

Windies Women will tour to Pakistan after nearly 15 years, Stafanie Taylor backs out
Image Credit: AP

Johnny Grave, the CEO of Cricket West Indies also commented that the decision of playing the T20I series against Pakistan in Pakistan was left up to the players if they have any problem and the cricket board was willing to accept the reasons of the players in touring Pakistan.

“We made it very clear to the players and support staff that should any of them have any personal reservations about this Tour, that we fully understand and accept their position,” Grave said.

Matthews is currently recovering from a ligament injury to the knee that she got during the Women’s Big Bash League. Trinidad and Tobago’s uncapped offspinner Karishma Ramharack got her maiden call-up who has replaced Mathews. Along with her, 21-year-old opening batter from Jamaica, Rashada Williams too has received her maiden call-up.

Courtney Browne, the chairman of selectors is quite impressed with the selection.

“Coming into the squad for the first time is young opening batter Rashada Williams from Jamaica, who has impressed the selectors with her solid technique and her ability to play spin, along with off-spinner Karishma Ramharack, who has been rewarded for her consistency in regional cricket,” Browne said.

Meanwhile, Windies Women will attend an acclimatization camp on January 26 in Dubai prior to their arriving in Karachi a day before the first T20I. The T20Is are scheduled to be played at the Southend Club in Karachi on January 31, February 1 and February 3. Merissa Aguilleira, who had captained West Indies in 74 ODIS and 70 T20Is, will lead the team in the T20I series while Shakera Selman will be her deputy.

Squad:

Stafanie Taylor (C, ODI), Merissa Aguilleira (C, T20I), Shemaine Campbelle, Shamilia Connell, Deandra Dottin, Afy Fletcher, Chinelle Henry, Kycia Knight, Natasha McClean, Anisa Mohammed, Chedean Nation, Karishma Ramharack, Shakera Selman, Rashada Williams.

Series Schedule:

31 January – 1st T20I, Southend Club, Karachi
1 February – 2nd T20I, Southend Club, Karachi
3 February – 3rd T20I, Southend Club, Karachi
7 February – 1st ODI (ICC Women’s Championship), DIS
9 February – 2nd ODI, (ICC Women’s Championship), ICC Academy
11 February – 3rd ODI (ICC Women’s Championship), ICC Academy

Women’s World T20 2018 – Stay Tuned For More!

Women’s World T20 2018- Stay Tuned For More!

The focus of the entire cricketing world is now in the Caribbean Islands and will be for the next two weeks as a big portion of the cricket fans will follow the Women’s World T20 intensely.


It was not the same picture in earlier versions when the Women’s World T20 used to happen along with the Men’s World T20 and never got the similar importance or popularity. Most of the matches were not telecast live and key matches like Semi-final and Final used to be organized on the same day with the Men’s game in an earlier slot of the day. Despite issuing one single ticket for Women’s and Men’s final, even most of the crowd preferred to come only for the evening game i.e the men’s one. As a reason of this biased nature, fans used to point out the absence of big shots and lack of general attracting cricket in women’s game but things have changed manifold in recent times.

Post a successful Women’s World Cup in 2017, the game has captured the fancy of general cricket fans, especially in India, the biggest market of the game. For the first time, fans followed the progress of their team through traditional media and social media. Players like Smriti Mandhana, Mithali Raj, and Jhulan Goswami became household names. When the Indian team returned with runners-up medals, the players were all over the national media and gained instant fame.

In an ICC survey in June, the results showed a significant increase of interest in the Women’s game with close to 70% fans wanted to see more live telecast. That popularity brings more sponsors and telecasting companies identify women’s game as a potential cash cow. The current World T20 is being telecast close to 160 Territory whereas live digital coverage through various platforms will be available in more than 200 countries. Not only that, the telecast will also be covered by some of the most reputed names in global cricket commentary world including former Australia greats Lisa Sthalekar, Melanie Jones, former India captain Anjum Chopra, former England captain Nasser Hussain and regular faces like Tom Moody, Ian Bishop, and Sanjay Manjarekar to form a 14-member panel. Also with the live recording of all the matches available, ICC introduced DRS in all matches for the first time. To get more viewership and sponsors ICC has also decided to keep India’s matches in a prime time slot in India.

The great thing is that the players are also now well-equipped to return the favor to fans with some scintillating bit of performance. The fitness of the players has increased significantly and increased entertainment quotient in the game. The players are now much agile in the field; they dive across or make long chases down the boundary line regularly. Already we have seen Hayley Jensen take a brilliant well-judged catch in the first match. The running between the wickets has improved a lot with regular occurrences of quick two’s and three’s during the matches. More and more power hitters are on display in recent times, well demonstrated by Harmanpreet Kaur in tournament’s first match when she became the first Indian woman to score a T20 hundred in just 49 balls with 8 towering Sixes. The idea of her achievement can be well measured with this trivia, David Miller, Rohit Sharma and Chris Gayle are the only 3 players in Men’s game to score an international T20 Hundred in lesser than 49 deliveries.

Players like Suzie Bates, Harmanpreet, Ellyse Perry already star in Women’s cricket. But many more youngsters are coming up regularly to become fan favorites. Players like Ashleigh Gardner, Amelia Kerr, and Hayley Matthews have already made their marks in a short period of time with their performances in International cricket and franchise cricket like BBL and KIA Superleague. Another young player who is quickly developing a reputation in T20 Cricket is Jemimah Rodrigues. Despite her young age, she has a cool head and his maturity was put on the show when she added more than 100 runs with her captain Harmanpreet to take India out of a precarious 40 for 3 in the first match of the tournament against New Zealand. These younger players will inspire a younger generation of fans who will be a boost to enhance the overall popularity.

Another aspect of World T20 that fans are looking forward to is the close competition between the teams. Traditionally England, Australia and West Indies were considered the biggies in Women’s cricket. However, in Recent times India, New Zealand, and South Africa have come up well in the ranks with some handy players. Even teams like Bangladesh are also not so far behind as shown by their shocking Asia cup triumph over India early this year. Although their first match in the tournament was a one-sided one when Deandra Dottin led the annihilation and got them all out for just 46 runs. But despite that performance, in this shortest format teams like Bangladesh, Ireland, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are expected to provide surprises as we move ahead in the tournament. In fact, a close fight was already demonstrated in yesterday’s India-Pakistan match where Pakistan ran India pretty close thanks to some shoddy fielding by India. Finally, India emerged victoriously!

The 2018 World T20 had a blazing start on Friday and expected to provide more attractive cricket in coming days in those beautiful West Indian cricket grounds. Stay tuned!