Women's Sport: Australia's Lanning says crowd record at T20 World Cup final would be "massive" for women's cricket

Australia’s captain Meg Lanning believes the Twenty20 World Cup final to be hosted in Melbourne will be “massive” if organisers manage to break the record for the number of spectators at a women’s sports event.

Organisers are attempting to break the record when the Women’s Twenty20 World Cup final is hosted at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground in March. The final will take place on International Women’s Day held on 8 March and is looking to beat the record of 90,185 set in 1999 when the FIFA’s women’s World Cup final was held in California.

Captains of teams participating in the event came together in Melbourne today to push the event and encourage cricket fans to descend on MCG to break the long-standing record. Tickets are being priced at just $5 for kids and start at $20 for adults to draw more interest from cricket fans in the area.

Australia’s cricket captain, Meg Lanning, believes it would be a huge moment for women’s cricket if the T20 final was able to break the record and draw more attention to the women’s game in Australia and across the world.

“All the really big crowds have been at men’s sporting events, but I think people are now starting to see women’s sport as part of the game worldwide,” Lanning said while introducing the tournament in Melbourne.

India’s captain Harmanpreet Kaur reiterated Lanning’s excitement ahead of the launch of the tournament on 21 February: “Everybody is so excited, they just want to see a good tournament and good cricket.

We are really happy that people are now starting to think and talk about women’s cricket. It’s great that little girls are coming to enjoy the games.’’

One way organisers have attempted to increase the number of spectators is by booking international megastar Katy Perry to perform at the final of the event.

Following the announcement of Katy Perry’s performance, ICC T20 World Cup 2020 Local Organising Committee CEO, Nick Hockley, spoke of his belief that the superstar would bring even more attention to the event.

“What better way to celebrate than the T20 World Cup final at the MCG on International Women’s Day and who better to lead that celebration than Katy Perry, who is an inspiration to girls and boys across the world,” Hockley said.

Yet Meg Lanning was keen to emphasise that Perry was simply a sideshow to the main event of the two best women’s cricket teams in the world battling it out at one of the biggest cricket grounds in the world.

“Katy Perry is the sideshow, not the main act … it is going to be special and something that you want to be a part of.

“This is a really big moment for sport in Australia and around the world, and hopefully a lot of people want to be involved in that.”

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