The Australian women’s cricket team will begin its preparations for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and a year of significant international fixtures on Saturday when they take on New Zealand in The CommBank limited-overs series in Brisbane.
In their first international encounter since their triumphant T20 World Cup win in front of 86,174 at the MCG in March, the team kicks off a busy schedule which includes the postponed 50-over World Cup in New Zealand in February/March 2022 the T20 World Cup in South Africa, the Birmingham Commonwealth Games and the women’s Ashes, due to begin late next year in Australia.
The series will see the Aussies play three T20 matches and three ODI’s against White Ferns in a battle for the Rose Bowl Trophy, which Australia has held for the last 20 years and have no intention of handing back, according to skipper Meg Lanning.
“That’s a really good record Australia have, especially considering New Zealand is a good team with good match-winners,” Lanning told Cricket Australia’s The Scoop podcast from Brisbane.
“I’ve heard the Kiwis are pretty keen to get the trophy back and we’re certainly very keen to keep it. It’s a really good rivalry, it’s changed a bit over the last few years because we know each other so well on and off the field through the WBBL.
“There’s nowhere to hide against these guys, both us and they would say we know each other’s games really well and that makes it a really competitive series and a really good challenge as well.
“They’ve got some world-class players who are match winners, led by Sophie Devine, who is extremely dangerous.
“It’s going to be a great series and we know we’re going to have to play really good cricket across the six games to get the result we want.”
The series will prove to be an ideal practice run for the Aussies, who have firmly set their sights winning gold in Birmingham when Women’s T20 Cricket makes its debut at the Commonwealth Games.
Speaking on the addition of women’s cricket to the Commonwealth Games programme, former Australian world cup-winning captain, Belinda Clark was thrilled with the announcement by the Commonwealth Games Federation is another positive for women’s cricket and women’s sport.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for the game’s talented female athletes to showcase their skills on the world stage… Already this year we have seen a sell-out crowd for the Women’s Big Bash League Final and strong television ratings across the WBBL followed by great crowds and live coverage of the Ashes in England,” Clark told Cricket Australia.
“This is an exciting time for the sport and the impact on the next generation is obvious, with girls making up six out of 10 new participants in Australia.”
Cricket will make its return to the Commonwealth Games programme for the first time since its debut in Kuala Lumpur 1998 where the Australian men’s team won silver behind South Africa. Birmingham 2022 will feature a women’s T20 competition held at the legendary Edgbaston Cricket Ground.
The first T20 match will be played on Saturday 26th at 1:50pm Brisbane’s Allan Border Field
With Cricket Australia.