February 11 in Delhi or February 13 in Mumbai are likely the dates for the Women’s Premier League (WPL) player auction for 2023. The players’ auction was scheduled to take place on February 6 by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), but the franchise owners reportedly asked the board to postpone it.
Less than a month remains for the five new franchises to get ready for the tournament’s inaugural season, which is scheduled to run from March 4th to March 24th. The owners’ desire to put together their coaching staff before the auction is one of the factors contributing to the delay in the auction date.
Additionally, the WPL teams’ owners have stakes in the ongoing ILT20 2023 in UAE and SA20 2023 in South Africa, both of which have finals set for February 12 and 13, respectively.
The MI Emirates, Dubai Capitals, Gulf Giants (Adani), and Sharjah Warriors are four WPL franchises with ILT20 teams (Capri). MI Cape Town and Pretoria Capitals are teams in the SA20 that are run by the Mumbai and Capitals owners.
The five franchises were acquired by the owners of the three IPL teams—Mumbai Indians, Royal Challengers Bangalore, and Delhi Capitals—along with Adani Group and Capri Global for a total of INR 4669.99 crore (about USD 572.78 million). This is the largest deal ever made in women’s cricket.
While the sports division of the Adani Group, Adani Sportsline, won the Ahmedabad franchise, on the other side of the coin, Capri Global, a non-banking financial firm, chose Lucknow as its home base. The three IPL teams, Mumbai, Capitals, and Royal Challengers stayed in Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru which serve as their respective IPL homes.
Mumbai to host the first edition of WPL 2023
ESPNcricinfo reported that the BCCI is planning to hold the entire first edition of the event in Mumbai, with all 22 matches likely to be scheduled at Brabourne Stadium and Dr. DY Patil National Sports Academy.
Due to the proximity of the WPL calendar to the Women’s T20 World Cup 2023, which concludes on February 26, one city will host the competition in order to avoid logistical difficulties. The players will gain from not having to travel or face other hurdles by playing in a single place. The move, though, is likely to enrage club owners who will be hoping for home and away matches, much like the men’s IPL tournament.
Jhulan Goswami likely to join as Mumbai’s bowling coach and mentor
Jhulan Goswami, the veteran of Indian women’s cricket, will now serve as the mentor and bowling coach for the Mumbai-based team in the first Women’s Premier League. After playing her final game at the historical Lord’s in September 2022, the former India bowler announced her retirement from international cricket.
Goswami’s addition to the team’s coaching staff was reported by ESPNCricinfo, despite no formal confirmation from the Mumbai franchise to date. Sourav Ganguly, the former president of the BCCI, who will now serve as the director of the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League, confirmed the news.
Jhulan Goswami had reportedly been signed by the Delhi Capitals-owned team for the WPL, but Ganguly denied those claims when he addressed the media at Eden Gardens on Tuesday, January 31, stating, “Jhulan has gone to Mumbai. We had given her an offer, but she is going to Mumbai.”