Fourteen years after the Indian Premier League played its first match, women’s cricket is about to get its very own IPL tournament.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) recently announced the launch of the new women’s T20 competition. The Women’s IPL will run alongside the men’s version of the tournament. However, it is unknown whether the two cricket competitions will play at the same time of the season.
Women’s cricket fans are already debating which teams will be involved in the new W-IPL. The wait for the women’s T20 cricket league is almost over, and the tournament will begin in 2023. Fans can get the Betway sign up bonus India for the first-ever W-IPL season. Cricket fans can then bet on their favourite team every matchday.
In the United Kingdom, the Hundred cricket tournament features a men’s and women’s division with matches played on the same day. The women’s Hundred matches take place before the men’s fixtures, allowing fans to watch both games.
There has been no confirmation on the BCCI’s plan for staging the women’s competition. However, the organisation claimed the Women’s IPL will begin in early 2023. One recent report claimed the BCCI has a window reserved for March to play the women’s cricket tournament.
The Men’s IPL will begin around March, with the tournament returning to its previous home-and-away format. The competition will also move away from Mumbai and Pune, with teams playing matches in their home stadiums. The last three editions of the IPL were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and safety for players’ well-being. Now, the IPL will return to the format it previously enjoyed before 2020.
The BCCI experimented with a previous women’s T20 cricket competition with great success. The Women’s T20 Challenge launched in 2018 with three teams conducting a round-robin tournament. The competition featured the IPL Supernovas, IPL Trailblazers, and IPL Velocity. The Women’s T20 Challenge competition drew high viewership numbers. The impressive viewership numbers recorded by the women’s league led to a call for a full-blown women’s T20 cricket division of the IPL.
The Women’s IPL will replace the Women’s T20 Challenge. The new competition will begin with six franchises across India and be similar to the Men’s IPL format. It is hoped that the women’s competition will improve upon the strong viewership numbers of the Women’s T20 Challenge.
Franchises and cities have not been declared for the new Women’s IPL, but one city hopeful of receiving a franchise is Odisha. The Odisha Cricket Association (OCA) has discussed the possibility of a franchise with the Sports and Youth Services sector. The OCA has also involved corporate organisations to attract a franchise to the city. Odisha is currently home to several sports franchises from various competitions in India.
India’s female cricket stars, Mithali Raj and Jhulan Goswami, recently retired from the game. However, the women are considering a return to the game already to play in the inaugural edition of the W-IPL. Mithali Raj recently told the 100% Cricket podcast that her options are still open to play.