Photo Credit: Sydney Sixers
Cricket Australia has confirmed the duration of this season’s Big Bash Leagues, with KFC BBL|13 to feature a reduced 44-match schedule and the Weber WBBL|09 fixture to remain at 59.
The reduction of BBL matches (40 regular season matches plus 4 finals) is a key feature in Cricket Australia’s extended seven-year broadcast deal with the Foxtel Group and Seven West Media.
A new four-match finals series will feature the top four Clubs, with the finals structure to be confirmed.
The changes have been confirmed 12 months in advance, and will apply for all future seasons, with the reduction to 44 matches down from 61 expected to see BBL|13 build on an outstanding BBL|12, that featured high quality cricket, world class talent and significant audiences and crowds.
No changes have been made to the WBBL schedule, with the world’s best players set to compete across 59 matches (56 regular season matches plus 3 finals) in WBBL|09.
Full fixtures, including start and end dates for both the BBL and WBBL will be confirmed in due course.
From 9am Monday, 15 May, a week-long retention window will commence for the first time. Clubs will be able to re-sign up to 12 BBL and 10 WBBL players from their previous season’s primary lists, excluding overseas and local replacement players.
The BBL and WBBL Contracting Embargo Periods will lift the following Monday, 22 May, with the Trade Period also commencing.
In another first, Clubs will be able to trade Draft picks in any of the four rounds of the Overseas Player Drafts. Each club will be required to have at least one selection in each round of the Drafts.
WBBL/BBL Retention window: 15-22 May
WBBL Contracting Window Start Date/Embargo Period Lifting: 22 May
BBL Contracting Window Start Date/Embargo Period Lifting: 22 May
WBBL Trade Period: 22 May–12 October
BBL Trade Period: 22 May–30 November
Alistair Dobson, General Manager, Big Bash Leagues, said:
“In conjunction with our Clubs and broadcast partners, we’re pleased to confirm the length of the upcoming Weber WBBL and KFC BBL seasons and look forward to announcing the full schedules in the near future.
“A shortened BBL will allow us greater flexibility to ensure we can deliver the best possible fixture for clubs and fans, while providing a platform that allows players to continue to produce the world-class levels of cricket we’ve seen over the duration of the tournament.
“Whilst no changes have been made to the WBBL schedule, it’s vital that we make sure the tournament continues to be at the forefront of T20 Leagues as the global women’s game continues to evolve at a rapid rate.
“As a League we’re always reviewing and looking at ways we can evolve, adapt and innovate, and as part of that, we’ll continue to consider the structure of the WBBL season.
“We’re looking forward to seeing what impact the introduction of retention windows and ability for clubs to trade draft picks has, in conjunction with the existing Trade Period. Clubs’ draft picks will again be confirmed via lottery ahead of the draft, no doubt creating plenty of excitement as Clubs finalise their lists ahead of the season.”