The Head of the BCCI, Saurav Ganguly, announced today that the first women’s Indian Premier League (WIPL) will kick off in March 2023 although the dates are not confirmed.
The BCCI has rearranged its domestic cricket schedule for Women to accommodate women’s IPL. To make this happen, the Domestic season, originally scheduled to run between November and April, has been preponed by a month (October) and would conclude in February 2023.
Although an International T20 competition has been happening in the past at the behest of the BCCI, there is a considerable demand for an IPL league for Women from both spectators and the cricketing fraternity.
One should remember that an indication to start the “WIPL” was initiated in February 2022. Things are firmer, and the month of March (2023) is a surety.
The enthusiasm to own a franchise has already begun. Three Franchisees, including two from India and the other from the West Indies, have already put their hand up. They are:
• The Knight Riders (Kolkata)
• Rajasthan Royals (Rajasthan) &
• The Barbados Royals (Barbados).
Plans are underway now at the BCCI to club the agenda of WIPL as part of the AGM scheduled next month (September). Media rights etc., would be discussed in this meeting. There is no refusing the enthusiasm over Women’s cricket in India, and it has gone up by a notch since India won Silver in the just concluded CWG.
Mithali Raj, who hung up her boots just a few months back, is pondering over a comeback should the WIPL take shape. She said, “I am keeping that option open. I have not yet decided. There are a few more months to go before the Women’s IPL happens. It would be lovely to be part of the first edition of the Women’s IPL,” she had said while speaking on ICC’s 100% Cricket podcast earlier in July.