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A Ramble on Women's Cricket
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Wise Words from Suzie Bates
If the purpose of the County Championship is said to be to provide players for the KSL, I would suggest it is only one of its purposes and equally important is to provide cricket for many players who do not aspire to ‘higher’ things but simply to play at a level to which they are well suited.
Many articles have been written in recent times suggesting that the drive for greater honours is all that brings players into any sport. Tournaments and leagues have to be arranged on that basis. It simply isn’t so. Many just wish to play where they neatly fit and realise that that is not in an England, or even KSL, shirt.
Participation for its own sake is frequently forgotten. I was well aware I was not an England player, a county player, or even one likely to play in the premier league (or whatever it was called in those days) but I would not have missed a single ball bat in hand, or failed to bowl an ‘offy’, taken a catch or fumbled a simple piece of fielding. I loved it all, and many women and girls do too, and they are too often forgotten in the adoration and the attention of the public and authorities for those at the ‘top’. If you wish to get an idea of the focus of those who put the cash into the game to keep it running, try reading this Press Release from November 2016. Note the words 'county' and 'club' do not appear.
Do the qualification rulesin County cricket need amending as some have suggested, allowing all players to wander freely from County side to county side? I guess it depends on whether you consider the name of your County has any meaning. In the men’s game it may no longer - and a few guest players or overseas players in any team is acceptable, but if the bulk of the team does not have some county affiliation, then perhaps it shouldn’t be called County cricket. To me that would be a sad day.
County cricket deserves more support than it currently gets, as does clubcricket. From these sides, KSL and England players of the future are currently honing their skills, but many girls are playing simply for the love of the sport. They should not be sidelined or forgotten.
[Slightly amended from a response to an article on CRICKETher]
It Shouldn't Need Saying...
It is always a sad day, whatever the rights or wrongs of the situation, or however heartfelt the position on either side, when politics interferes with sport. I feel sure that the players on both sides in this matter would always prefer to settle cricketing matters on the cricket field, or, if any individual felt strongly enough, to withdraw their participation from this particular event. I have no idea of the feeling of the players on either side and suspect they may well be mixed, but it is the governing bodies who decide on these matters, not the players.
An ICC committee were charged with the job of deciding what should happen in view of the fact that an invitation from the Pakistan Cricket Board had simply been ignored by its Indian counterpart. A neutral venue in the UAE had been suggested in an attempt to find a way around the impasse.
The ICC committee has decided that all six points from the matches that would have been played should be given to Pakistan and furthermore, that the NRR calculations should be based on the assumption that Indian had scored 0 runs in 50 overs in each game. It felt that the BCCI had not provided "acceptable reasons" for not playing the series.
It is rather puzzling to some that the two teams will meet on the cricket field in the qualifiers and very possibly in another tournament too.
The effect of this ruling is that the four teams that gain automatic qualification to the world cup in England in 2017 will be Australia, England, New Zealand and the West Indies. South Africa, India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will join Ireland, Scotland, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Papua New Guinea and Thailand, in a qualifying tournament in Sri Lanka in February 2017. Four teams from this tournament will join the automatic qualifiers, to make up the eight teams to fight it out in England.
First ICC Championship Comes to an end
If there is one comment that immediately springs to my mind about this tournament then it actually has nothing to do with qualifying for the world cup in England in 2017. You may feel that remark a little strange, but as one who has been arguing for a number of years that the top teams need to play the 'minnows' in order to hopefully raise the standard of the women's game worldwide, and make more teams competitive at top level, then this has been an excellent start. That is not to say that the final table hasn't finished up pretty much as one might have expected, but there have been surprises along the way and those near the bottom of the pile perhaps have a better idea of where they need to be.
No one can have expected, even the greatest optimist, that Sri Lanka (for instance) would trounce Australia in their three matches, or Pakistan hammer England. The hope must be that the compulsion to play, spurs all teams to greater efforts and ultimately more teams become capable of producing the occasional upset and eventually playing on equal terms with the 'big boys'.
It is to be hoped this idea will continue to a second around ahead of the following World Cup.
Quote from a Bangladeshi Woman Cricketer
Chumki says she lives for cricket and “would love to play in the national team”. Like Flintoff, she is an all-rounder: an opening batsman (never a batswoman, she insists) and a fast bowler.
Batsman ? Seems Chumki understands more than how to play the game !
Coming Up : 7 Reasons to not take up bowling and "Do's and Don'ts on the Cricket Field".