The upcoming season of Australia’s Women’s Big Bash League will feature standalone regular-season matches at the Melbourne Cricket Ground and Sydney Cricket Ground for the first time.
Games have also been scheduled for the Adelaide Oval, with Cricket Australia describing the schedule as a “groundbreaking step” for the league.
The season begins on October 19 at the North Sydney Oval as the Sydney Sixers take on the Melbourne Stars. Adelaide Oval will host back-to-back games on November 24, including Adelaide Strikers vs Perth Scorchers under the lights.
The MCG (pictured) will host the Melbourne derby between the Stars and the Renegades the following day. The SCG will then host back-to-back games, including the Sydney derby between the Sixers and the Thunder, on November 26.
Teams will play more matches in their home markets than ever before, with each side to feature at its home ground in the first nine days of the tournament. This season’s WBBL will also feature its first overseas players draft, which will see clubs vie for the services of the world’s best T20 players.
The WBBL was previously held alongside the men’s Big Bash League but it has been operating as a standalone competition since 2019-20. The MCG and SCG have not hosted WBBL games since it became a standalone league.
Alistair Dobson, general manager of the Big Bash Leagues, said: “Weber WBBL|09 is building as our biggest tournament yet, from the first women’s overseas player draft to historic matches at three of Australia’s most iconic stadiums and other venues across the country that are synonymous with the WBBL.
“The WBBL has long been the world’s leading cricket league for women and the natural progression of the league is to have the best players in the world playing in the best cricket venues in the world.
“Clubs, players and fans will benefit from more home games in each market and each team featuring at home in the first nine days of the tournament. Players will be paid more than ever in WBBL|09 with the salary cap per team doubling and the top players set to earn over A$100,000 (£53,000/€62,000/$69,000).”