ICC awards hosting rights to women’s tournaments, Lord’s set for WTC Finals

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced Bangladesh, India, England and Sri Lanka as the four host countries of the women’s white ball events from 2024 to 2027, while also confirming that Lord’s Cricket Ground will stage the men’s World Test Championship (WTC) Finals in 2023 and 2025.

India has landed the 2025 Women’s World Cup, having held previous editions of the tournament in 1978, 1997 and 2013, respectively. New Zealand staged the most recent edition of the World Cup from March 4 to April 3, with the event having been postponed from 2021 due to COVID-19.

Jay Shah, honorary secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said: “We are delighted to host the 2025 ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup and let me tell you that BCCI will leave no stone unturned to make it a memorable event for everyone concerned.

“We are taking several steps to raise the profile of the sport right from the grassroots level and hosting the World Cup will further boost the popularity of the sport in the country. The BCCI remains committed to women’s cricket in India. We have the infrastructure in place, and I am confident we will have a very successful edition of the World Cup.”

The 2024 Women’s T20 World Cup will be hosted by Bangladesh for the second time, with the 2026 edition going to England for the first time since 2009. Sri Lanka will host the 2027 Women’s T20 Champions Trophy, subject to its national team qualifying for the event.

Clare Connor, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) interim CEO, said: “We saw back in 2017 how hosting the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup captured people’s imagination and I’ll never forget watching Heather Knight lift the trophy on that magical day at a sold-out Lord’s.

“Women’s cricket has developed rapidly since then, from the numbers of girls picking up bats through All Stars and Dynamos, joining clubs, and being able to progress on a pathway to the highest levels of performance.

“We’re seeing right now the positive impact that the Women’s Euros is having for football, and hosting this global cricket event will give us another incredible opportunity to inspire even more girls to pick up a bat and ball.”

Commenting on the awarding of the hosting rights, Greg Barclay, ICC chair, added: “Accelerating the growth of the women’s game is one of the ICC’s strategic priorities and taking these events to some of our sport’s biggest markets give us a fantastic opportunity to do that and deepen its connection with cricket’s one billion plus fans.”

Meanwhile, the ‘Home of Cricket’ has been approved by the ICC Board to host the WTC Finals in 2023 and 2025 after COVID-19 saw the London venue lose the right to stage the inaugural event.

In March 2021, the ICC confirmed that the Ageas Bowl, home of Hampshire Cricket, would stage its inaugural WTC final. The match, which saw New Zealand defeat India, took place from June 18-23 last year in a bio-secure bubble at the Southampton stadium.

In selecting the Ageas Bowl, the ICC said it drew on the ECB’s experience of delivering a full summer of bio-safe international cricket in 2020. Lord’s had been earmarked the host the event, but the BCCI had earlier said Southampton would be the destination owing to the Ageas Bowl’s expertise in hosting bio-secure cricket.