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BCCI set to launch women’s IPL with 5 teams in 2023

BCCI set to launch women’s IPL with 5 teams in 2023

By Sanjay Maurya

The long-awaited women’s IPL is set to become a reality next year, with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) planning a five-team tournament for March 2023, soon after the conclusion of the Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa on 26 February. The BCCI has recently taken this decision in view of the increasing demand for women’s cricket.

The women’s IPL will be played before the men’s IPL. As soon as this league starts, India will join the list of countries like Australia and England. The Women’s Big Bash is played in Australia, while England host the Hundred Women’s Competition. The BCCI’s proposed plan includes a total of 22 matches, with 18 players in each team, of whom a maximum of six are from overseas. A playing XI cannot consist of more than five foreign players, with four from ICC’s full-time members and one from ICC’s associate member countries.

As per the plan, each team will play the other twice during the league stage (20 matches), with the league toppers going straight to the final. The second finalist will be decided through an eliminator between the second and third-placed teams from the league stage. According to the BCCI, ‘Organizing matches in the WIPL on the home and opposition grounds will be challenging. Therefore, it is suggested that the first 10 matches be held at one place and the remaining 10 matches at a different location.

As far as the Auction of teams is concerned, it can be decided on a zone basis. Two cities can be shortlisted from each zone. These include Dharamsala/Jammu (North Zone), Pune/Rajkot (West Zone), Indore/Nagpur/Raipur (Central Zone), Ranchi/Cuttack (East Zone), Kochi/Vizag (South Zone) and Guwahati (North East Zone). However, a final decision will be taken by the IPL Governing Council chairman along with the BCCI office bearers.

With the progress of cricket in India, there has been a demand to start women’s IPL for a long time. This demand intensified after the Indian team was runner-up in the T20 World Cup in 2017. The Women’s Big Bash League has been played in Australia since 2016, while the Women’s Hundred began last year. Pakistan has also announced the women’s league for next year.

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