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Cricket

We’d Love To Have A Women’s IPL Team, Says Rajasthan Royals’s CEO

The BCCI had earlier given indications of launching a women’s IPL in 2023.

File Photo of Team Rajasthan Royals (Photo: iplt20.com)

New Delhi: Rajasthan Royals CEO Jake Lush McCrum has said that the IPL franchise would “love to have a women’s IPL team”. The discussion about the launch of a women’s IPL has been going on for quite a long now. The BCCI had organised the inaugural Women’s T 20 Challenge which had only one exhibition game.

The next two editions saw participation from three teams and a total of four games were played in each. The 2021 edition of the Women’s T 20 Challenge was cancelled due to Covid-19.

The BCCI had earlier given indications of launching a women’s IPL in 2023. Board President Sourav Ganguly had told reporters in March that “we plan to start it by next year hopefully”.

Rajasthan Royal’s CEO McCrum said that the franchise is interested in starting a women’s side. “We’d love to have a women’s IPL team when it launches next year. We’re definitely very interested to expand our franchise base,” McCrum told Wisden India. “I’m so excited about the growth of women’s cricket in India and around the world.”

McCrum further said that a women’s IPL could help develop the sport at the grassroots level in India and make it a viable career option for young girls, just like The Hundred and the Women’s Big Bash League have done in England and Australia, respectively.

“We’ve seen in Australia the amount of investment they’ve put in and the impact that’s had on the game, and on the fanbase, the following, the grassroots cricket,” McCrum added.

“In England, last year, I think the biggest success of The Hundred was women’s cricket. The amount of fans coming in to watch the women’s cricket match, the amount of girls playing cricket that summer, it’s awesome.

“In India, the growth of participants in the women’s game has been significant, and I think a women’s IPL would take it to the next level. Because it would make parents and families around the world see that it is a viable career option. It is an amazing sport, and we want everyone to be a part of it.

“I’ve seen the passion of the fans for the women’s game. I’ve watched women’s internationals in Jaipur, and I’ve seen our own players get so excited when they get to meet Smriti Mandhana, when they get to see her cover drives – that passion is at another level, so I think women’s IPL is going to be brilliant, and we’d love to be a part of it, and I know it’s going to be a massive success.”

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