A 59-game fixture for the 2021-22 season of Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) cricket does not include games in New South Wales, Victoria, the ACT, or the Northern Territory.
But, in a WBBL first, every match of the WBBL|07 season will be broadcast live.
The updated schedule was unveiled today and includes revised dates and venues for matches 21 to 56 of the season in response to state border restrictions, public health conditions, and related impacts.
This follows the recent announcement that the first 20 games of the season will be played across three venues in Tasmania.
The health and safety of players, match officials, staff, fans, and the wider community was at the forefront of decision-makers minds when revising the schedule of the country’s fourth most-watched sporting league.
The season will open with the Sydney Sixers facing the Melbourne Stars at Blundstone Arena on Thursday night, October 14.
Cricket Australia’s Big Bash Leagues general manager Alistair Dobson said everyone involved in WBBL|07 needed to “remain nimble and agile” for the season to be completed.
“The Weber WBBL is Australia’s highest rating sporting league for women and the world’s best cricket league for women,” he said.
“We owe it to our players and loyal fans to deliver a full schedule, and today’s announcement further strengthens this.”
Venues included in the fixture are Tasmania’s Blundstone Arena, University of Tasmania Stadium, and Invermay Park, and South Australia’s Adelaide Oval and Karen Rolton Oval.
Also on the list is Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef Arena in Mackay, where the recent Australia v India ODIs were played, plus the WACA Ground and Lilac Hill, which signals a return of WBBL to Western Australia after missing out last season.
He was excited to announce a “landmark broadcast footprint”, which will see 24 matches broadcast live on the free Seven Network, and all 59 matches available on Foxtel and Kayo, plus the coverage on ABC Radio and cricket.com.au.
This will particularly be beneficial to fans in areas that are subject to lockdown, as well as anyone who finds accessing games difficult.
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“Fans can now watch every Weber WBBL|07 game on TV, ensuring that our passionate supporters will have access to world-class cricket despite the challenges of the pandemic,” he said.
“We understand that this revised schedule means our fans in New South Wales and Victoria won’t be able to attend Weber WBBL|07 matches in their own backyard.
“We are thinking of all our fans in those states as they continue navigating the challenges of lockdowns and hope they enjoy tuning into the broadcast on Seven, Foxtel, Kayo, ABC Radio, or cricket.com.au.”
He said the confirmation of the season schedule showed Australian Cricket’s commitment to the women’s competition.
“We are grateful to our clubs, broadcast partners, players, commercial partners, venues, and governments for their cooperation, understanding, and flexibility as we strive to deliver another fantastic season,” he said.
Cricket Tasmania chief executive officer Dominic Baker was thrilled to have the first 22 matches of the season held in his state.
“We’ve always said that we’ll be ready to take more cricket content on from a moment’s notice, and hosting as many games of the WBBL season is a part of that,” he said.
“It’s fantastic that Tasmanians will have the chance to watch so much of the world’s best female cricketers in action, and we implore them to get out there, cheer on their heroes, and make the most of this fantastic opportunity not just for Tasmanian cricket, but Tasmanian sport in general.”
Perth Scorchers commercial, marketing, and communications general manager Shay Nasta was “delighted” to have the great game available both in person and on screens.
“We’re thrilled WBBL will return to Perth after missing out last season and look forward to hosting eight matches over nine action-packed days,” she said.
“Our WBBL match days are some of the best in the country thanks to the amazing support of the club’s passionate fanbase, and it will be great to see our team back in WA playing in front of them.”
While the location of the finals series is yet to be determined, dates have been locked in for November 24, 25, and 27.
To view the full fixture, visit www.cricket.com.au.
YOUR TEAM’S FIRST GAME OF WBBL|07
All games available to watch on Seven/Foxtel/Kayo
Adelaide Strikers: v Sydney Thunder, October 16, Blundstone Arena, 7.05pm AEDT
Brisbane Heat: v Perth Scorchers, October 17, Blundstone Arena, 10.15am AEDT
Hobart Hurricanes: v Melbourne Renegades, October 16, Blundstone Arena, 3.40pm AEDT
Melbourne Renegades: v Hobart Hurricanes, October 16, Blundstone Arena, 3.40pm AEDT
Melbourne Stars: v Sydney Sixers, October 14, Blundstone Arena, 7.40pm AEDT
Perth Scorchers: v Brisbane Heat, October 17, Blundstone Arena, 10.15am AEDT
Sydney Sixers: v Melbourne Stars, October 14, Blundstone Arena, 7.40pm AEDT
Sydney Thunder: v Adelaide Strikers, October 16, Blundstone Arena, 7.05pm AEDT
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