Photo Credit: Perth Scorchers
Australian Cricket today proudly announced its inaugural Women and Girls Week will take place this summer, running throughout the Weber Women’s Big Bash League Finals series from 21-27 November.
Women and Girls Week celebrates the invaluable contribution of cricket’s female volunteers, coaches, officials, players and administrators by showcasing the people and initiatives that ensure women’s game goes from strength to strength.
By aligning to the WBBL|08 Finals, the week will highlight links between the WBBL competition, which inspires more girls to play cricket, and the grassroots clubs and volunteers that drive the growth of the women’s game.
The 2022-23 WBBL season, meanwhile, was officially launched this morning with the first game, between Brisbane Heat and Sydney Sixers, to be played on Thursday.
Perth will begin their title defence against Sydney Thunder at Blacktown International Sportspark on Sunday, followed by a clash with Hobart Hurricanes at the same venue on Monday.
Reflecting on Women and Girls Week, Perth Scorchers star Beth Mooney said:
“I said to one of the girls how amazing it is to have this opportunity for kids these days, because when I was growing up I didn’t get to see many female athletes as role models.
“For young girls to see that you can grow up wanting to be a Perth Scorchers player, a WA player or an Australian player, and having them front and centre is amazing.
“It’s been an amazing 10 years for cricket in Australia, especially in the women’s game. The evolution of the game has seen huge numbers of scoring rates, lots of wickets taken and lots of opportunities for young girls who can now see a pathway.
“Volunteers are a huge part of cricket around Australia. Sometimes they might feel like we take them for granted but certainly as a player I can see exactly the impact they have on being able to get days like this (Perth’s Fan Day) up, to get club cricket up, and to get people to games. We don’t want to underestimate what they do for the game.
“The opportunities as an administrator, coach or businesswoman are endless. Gone are the days where people just sit home and do something they think they should do. A lot of women out there do the things they want to do, and the opportunities are there for them.”
Perth Scorchers fast bowler Holly Ferling said:
“I think something the WBBL has done exceptionally well is find and attract some of those young girls to our game.
“You’ve now got young girls who are six years old saying they want to play for the Scorchers or Australia. I think for that to have happened so fast with this massive groundswell is so pleasing to watch.”
Female participation statistics in Australian cricket:
- Registered female participation in Australia increased year-on-year by 12,000 to 71,300 in 2021-22.
- The number of girls registered for junior club cricket also increased last year despite the COVID-19 pandemic, from 10,700 in 2019-20 to 13,200 in 2021-22.
- In WA, overall participation for women and girls in cricket increased by 2% throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, while registrations among junior girls increased by 7% in 2021-22.