Women’s cricket may soon receive an extensive cash injection, similar to that experienced by the men’s game, if a proposed T20 tournament gets the go-ahead from the International Cricket Council.
Plans for a global cricket league have originated in Australia, where businessman, Shaun Martyn, and Australian world cup winner, Lisa Sthalekar have been working together.
The pair are looking to establish a female tournament that is loosely based on the Indian Premier League.
It is believed that if all comes to fruition, female cricketers could be earning themselves £23,500 for just 12 days of work. Just like the IPL, the competition would be staged in Asia.
Female cricket stars have been recently reaping the benefits of more appreciative national cricket boards, who have been raising the average wage in the women’s game over the past few years.
Singapore is the proposed location for the tournament, which would include six company-owned teams boasting the biggest names in women’s cricket.
The organisers say that they have already met in person with ICC chief executive, Dave Richardson, to discuss their propositions in detail.
With the ball now rolling, it might not be too long before we witness a similar tournament – although on a smaller scale – to the Indian Premier League.
ICC approval is still a necessity though, as unofficial tournaments wouldn’t have permission to take part within countries that are represented on the council.
The fact that Singapore is an associate member means that denial from Dubai would leave the organisers scrambling for another nation to host the tournament.
Speaking on BBC Radio 4, Martyn revealed his ambition for the tournament to work closely with the ICC: “We’re putting in exactly the same anti-corruption measures to prevent the possibility of match-fixing.
“All our tournament regulations will be the same that underpin the ICC tournaments around the world.”
With that in mind, fans can take solace that the traditions of the game wouldn’t be tampered with in terms of on-field play.
The Indian Premier League – the format on which the proposed women’s international cricket league is based on – was founded in 2008 and is currently enjoying a seventh successive season on the cricketing calendar.
However, it is money, and not the calibre of cricket on show that first springs to mind when the IPL is thought of. International players from all over the world have been filling their wallets whilst participating in a fairly short tournament.
Sacrificing only a month of their time every year may not sound like a lot, but it does often clash with the opening of the English domestic season.
Avoiding a similar disruption to the women’s game may well be an aim of this prospective tournament.
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