Home » Boycott threat by cricket’s biggest states forces women’s T20 change

Boycott threat by cricket’s biggest states forces women’s T20 change

It was also pointed out that post-WBBL games will be played at the same time as an international series against India, meaning many of the best players will not be available anyway and so open up spots for those on the fringe.

But Cricket Victoria, whose chief executive Nick Cummins recently agreed to terms for a three-year contract extension, remained implacable in opposition, with support from Cricket NSW.

Sydney Sixers star Ellyse Perry.Credit: Getty

The new, state-based Twenty20 competition was devised to augment the season after Cricket Australia and its broadcasters Seven and Foxtel agreed to reduce the Women’s Big Bash League from 14 games per team to 10, in line with a reduction in games for the men’s BBL ahead of the start of a new broadcast deal this year.

That reduction also eased a scheduling squeeze this year, with the T20 World Cup to be played in October in Bangladesh.

NSW and Victoria argued that with far more female players of all levels in their states, the new competition should be constituted along WBBL lines to maximise opportunities for players who would not make their state first XI sides but would command spots in all other teams.

This is particularly true in the case of the ACT, which has only a small number of top-level women’s players and fewer than half a dozen WBBL contracted players.

Lobbying by the ACT chair Greg Boorer for a bigger role in Australian cricket, including Canberra-based BBL and WBBL teams, was revealed via a parliamentary committee last year.

During his testimony, Boorer suggested that the federal government had the capacity to pressure Cricket Australia into expanding ACT cricket’s role by threatening to reduce funding for the sport.

“It’s not unusual or unprecedented for the federal government to step in and encourage governance reform. It’s happened in football previously,” Boorer told the Joint Standing Committee on the National Capital and External Territories. “A huge amount of government funding goes to Australian cricket.

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“It wouldn’t take a huge stretch of imagination, and it certainly wouldn’t cost the federal government any money – just a little bit of time and effort – to appropriately encourage the board of Cricket Australia, and therefore the shareholders of Cricket Australia, to perhaps consider reform in that space.”

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