Cape Town (South Africa), Oct 3: Just like the men’s team will do, the India women’s team will take on arch-rivals Pakistan on February 12 in their opening match in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in South Africa next year.
The clash in Group B at Newlands, Cape Town will be followed by India taking on West Indies in their second match on February 15 as per the schedule for the biggest-ever women’s sporting event in Africa was announced on Monday.
The top 10 teams in the world will begin their bid for the biggest prize in T20 cricket when South Africa take on Sri Lanka in the opening match of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup at Newlands on February 10.
A total of 23 matches will be played across Cape Town, Paarl and Gqeberha in 15 days. The world’s best cricketers will take centre stage for a uniquely African celebration of cricket culminating in the final scheduled at Newlands Cricket Ground with the winner being crowned on February 26, 2023.
Group A includes Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Group B comprises England, India, Pakistan, West Indies and Ireland in the eighth edition of the Women’s T20 World Cup.
The final match schedule was released on Monday in a uniquely African event at Newlands Cricket Ground in Cape Town with ICC Ambassador Mithali Raj attending the launch.
The Western Cape will play host to a bumper opening weekend of the Women’s T20 World Cup. Boland Park will host the first double-header, with England and the West Indies in action in the early match, followed by defending champions Australia taking on New Zealand, Cricket South Africa said in a release on Monday.
The four sub-continent sides will headline the second double-header at Newlands on Sunday as India take on Pakistan and Bangladesh face Sri Lanka.
ICC Chief Executive, Geoff Allardice said: “We are thrilled to be announcing the match schedule for the next ICC Women’s T20 World Cup as we look to build on the success of Australia 2020 and host a uniquely African celebration of cricket.
“As a key strategic priority for the sport, women’s cricket continues to build momentum and engage more fans than ever before. With T20 as the growth vehicle for cricket we are confident that this event and the inaugural U19 Women’s T20 World Cup preceding the senior event will leave a lasting legacy to grow girls and women’s cricket around the world,” he added.
Former India captain Mithali Raj, who is an ICC Ambassador, said she was really excited about the tournament being held in South Africa.
“The announcement of the schedule takes us one step closer to the Women’s T20 World Cup. This has been a fantastic period for the growth of the women’s game, and I am sure fans in South Africa will be out in huge numbers to support the players.
“I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to participate in ICC tournaments over the years and know what they mean to players globally. I can’t wait to watch some fast-paced, high-energy cricket and closely-fought, exciting matches,” she added.