Women's cricket will come to the fore on Thursday when West Indies captain Stafanie Taylor leads the NLCB Revellers against the Courts Gladiators in a T10 clash ahead of the semi-finals of the Hero Caribbean Premier League semifinal between the Trinbago Knight Riders and the Barbados Tridents.
The CPL is using its platform to give women's cricket a push in the region and the players will be able to showcase their talent in front of what is expected to be a bumper crowd at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Tarouba, San Fernando, on Thursday.
On Wednesday, the names and squads for the two matches on Thursday and Saturday were revealed at the Flamingo Room at the Hilton Trinidad.
Revellers will be made up of cricketers from Jamaica, T&T and the Leeward Islands, while the Gladiators will feature cricketers from Barbados, Guyana and Windward Islands.
The NLCB Revellers will be captained by Taylor and the Courts Gladiators will be led by Barbadian Afy Fletcher. The two teams will feature the best cricketing talent from across the Caribbean, with the likes of Anisa Mohammad (T&T), Britney Cooper (T&T), Natasha McLean (Jamaica), Kycia Knight (Barbados), Hayley Matthews (Barbados) and Qiana Joseph (Windwards) taking part.
Speaking at the press conference, Taylor said: “It is very pleasing to have an initiative such as this that the CPL has done for women’s cricket in the Caribbean. It’s a long time coming to potentially have a women’s T20 franchise tournament here in the West Indies, bringing international players here to our conditions and pitches, just as we go to their leagues. No doubt this will aid Cricket West Indies in growing women’s cricket in the region.”
Fletcher was also excited about the event. saying: “I think that it’s a great idea. Women’s cricket is rapidly growing so kudos to the persons for taking the initiative to find different avenues to expose the talent of the ladies of the Caribbean. Knowing that we have a small pool of women cricketers, I strongly believe that this is a stepping stone to move forward and also a way of attracting the eyes of the young girls across the region.”
The games have been made possible through the support of the Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs, Courts and the National Lotteries Control Board (NLCB).
NLCB Events Manager Susan Worrell said: “The NLCB is delighted to be supporting the initiative by CPL of women’s cricket for the advancement of the sport, which can be an inspiration to young girls since the NLCB continues its quest to create benefits.”
Unicomer (Trinidad) Llt managing director Clive Fletcher added: “This is a most significant partnership for us as it further supports the development of diversity in cricket. This investment pushes the envelope for the evolution of the sport to new heights, as we provide a platform to showcase the full spectrum of talent displayed by our female cricketers across the Caribbean Region. At Unicomer (Trinidad) Ltd. and Courts, we are very passionate and committed to the development of our people, and we believe in providing the opportunities to push the boundaries of innovation.”
CPL playoff ticket holders will be able to attend the two matches at no extra cost.
NLCB Revellers: Stafanie Taylor (capt) (Jamaica), Anisa Mohammed (Trinidad & Tobago), Chinelle Henry (Jamaica), Natasha McLean (Jamaica), Chedean Nation (Jamaica), Jodian Morgan (Jamaica), Stacy-Ann King (Trinidad & Tobago), Reniece Boyce (Trinidad & Tobago), Britney Cooper (Trinidad & Tobago), Felicia Walters (Trinidad & Tobago), Karishma Ramharack (Trinidad & Tobago), Caneisha Isaac (Trinidad & Tobago), Shawnisha Hector (Leewards).
Courts Gladiators: Afy Fletcher (Capt) (Windwards), Kycia Knight (Barbados), Kyshona Knight (Barbados), Hayley Matthews (Barbados), Aaliyah Alleyne (Barbados), Qiana Joseph (Windwards), Akeira Peters (Windwards), Erva Giddings (Guyana), Shabika Gajnabi (Guyana), Kaysia Schultz (Guyana), Cherry-Ann Fraser (Guyana), Sheneta Grimmond (Guyana), Shakera Selman (Barbados).