- Mithali Raj said that BCCI should not “wait forever” to organise women’s IPL
- BCCI has hosted Women’s IPL exhibition matches in the last 2 years
- BCCI had said full-fledged Women’s IPL will take some time to take shape
India women’s ODI captain Mithali Raj on Thursday urged the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to come up with a plan to organise a Women’s Indian Premier League (IPL) in the country from 2021.
Mithali Raj said that BCCI should not “wait forever” to organise the women’s IPL, although she believes initially the tournament can be on a “smaller scale”.
“I personally feel they should start a women’s IPL by next year, even if it’s on a slightly smaller scale and with some changes in rules, such as, say, have five to six foreign players in the first edition instead of four as is the case with the men’s IPL,” Mithali Raj told ESPNcricinfo.
Mithali’s comments came after India finished runners-up in Women’s T20 World Cup final in Australia. Harmanpreet Kaur’s team was completely outclassed by hosts Australia who went on to win their 5th T20 World Cup trophy in front of an 85,000-strong crowd at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).
Notably, the BCCI has hosted Women’s IPL exhibition matches in the last 2 years but has said a full-fledged Women’s IPL tournament will take some time to take shape. On the other hand, Australia have already hosted 5 editions of a highly-successful Women’s Big Bash League. England also have their own women’s T20 league — Kia Super League that has seen 4 successful editions.
“I agree we don’t have the depth in the domestic pool yet, but the key is to get the existing franchises to form teams, even if [only] five or six of them are keen to begin the process because in any case, the BCCI was going to have four teams [in the Women’s T20 Challenge].
“You cannot wait forever; you have to begin at some point, and gradually, year by year, you can keep evolving the league and then bring it down to four foreign players.”
Mithali Raj also stressed that considering Shafali Verma T20I exploits, the teenage batswoman can be considered for the ODIs.
“It’s not a bad idea to consider her for the ODIs. She is young but that should not be a criterion for not giving her opportunities in the ODI side,” Mithali added.