DUBAI, JULY 4
The inaugural ICC Women’s Championship kicks off in August and will see the top eight sides in the game lock horns in a multi-year, bilateral qualifying competition that will lead into the pinnacle event in women’s cricket, the ICC Women’s World Cup, according to ICC media release today.
Developed in order to create a more extensive and meaningful bilateral playing programme for women’s cricket, the ICC Women’s Championship will see the eight sides play each other in three One-Day Internationals, either at home or away, between 2014 and 2016.
Points will be awarded for each game, with the top four sides at the conclusion of the ICC Women’s Championship gaining automatic qualification to the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017, to be hosted by the England and Wales Cricket Board.
The bottom four sides will have a second chance to qualify for the marquee event through the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier 2017, details of which will be announced in due course. Joined by six regional qualifiers, the bottom four will face off for the final four positions at the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017.
The first round of the ICC Women’s Championship will see reigning world champion Australia begin their title defence against Pakistan on home soil, while three-time ICC Women’s World Cup champions England will host India, Sri Lanka will host South Africa and the West Indies will host New Zealand. The dates and venues for the first round fixtures will be announced shortly.
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said: “The ICC Women’s Championship provides another fantastic opportunity for women’s cricket. Following the ICC Board’s decision to hold a stand-alone ICC Women’s World Twenty20 tournament every four years, alternately with the ongoing joint men’s and women’s ICC World Twenty20, this tournament guarantees both regular playing opportunities and a meritocratic pathway to the ICC Women’s World Cup.”
Chair of the ICC Women’s Committee, Clare Connor, said: “The ICC Women’s Championship is an exciting new initiative that represents a significant step in the continued development of women’s cricket. The multi-year structure provides regular playing opportunities for the leading women’s teams, as well as clear context around bi-lateral series that provides a competitive pathway into the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017.”
The seven rounds of the ICC WC will be played during windows as follows:
|June – October 2014||Sri Lanka||v||South Africa|
|West Indies||v||New Zealand|
|November 2014 – February 2015||Australia||v||West Indies|
|March 2015 – August 2015||England||v||Australia|
|Sri Lanka||v||West Indies|
|October 2015 – January 2016|
|New Zealand||v||Sri Lanka|
|February 2016 – July 2016||New Zealand||v||Australia|
|South Africa||v||West Indies|
|August 2016 – October 2016||West Indies||v||England|
|South Africa||v||New Zealand|
|October 2016 – November 2016||Australia||v||South Africa|
The competing teams will announce fixture details closer to the relevant dates.
The ICC Women’s Championship 2014-16 structure
The ICC Women’s Championship 2014-16 is a multi-year event, with seven windows for each round of competition. The competing teams will be responsible for determining the dates of their series within each window.
The competition was agreed by the ICC Board at its January 2014 meeting.
ICC Women’s ODI Team Rankings
The eight participating teams are ranked as per their finishing positions at the ICC Women’s World Cup India 2013, and are as follows:
1. Australia, 2. West Indies, 3. England, 4. New Zealand, 5. Sri Lanka, 6. South Africa, 7. India, 8. Pakistan.