Dubai, March 8 IANS | 5 months ago

The International Cricket Council (ICC) Saturday joined millions of people across the globe in celebrating International Women's Day.


"International Women's Day provides an important opportunity to reflect on the progress made in cricket in recent times, and to refocus on the exciting future ahead," ICC Chief Executive David Richardson said in a media release.

"With the first women's match of the ICC World Twenty20 Bangladesh 2014 only 15 days' away, I am pleased to say that it will be the fourth time that the men's and women's competitions will be played alongside each other, with the women's semi-finals and final held on the same day and at the same venue as the men's.

"The double-header semi-finals and finals will be broadcast live across the globe, and, as such, the talent, skill and hard work of the world's best female players will again be enjoyed by a global television audience, another significant boost to the profile of the women's game," he said.

Richardson also recognised the recent appointment of New Zealand's Kathy Cross to the Emirates International Panel of ICC Umpires as a significant milestone in the ICC's Females in World Cricket Strategy.

"Kathy Cross became the first female appointed to an ICC match officials' panel, and she is standing in World Cricket League Division 5 in Malaysia, a global men's qualification tournament. She is an excellent role model for aspiring male and female umpires, and we hope that this will lead to more female officials in the global game."

Australia's Ellyse Perry, one of the highest profile stars in the game today, has won three major ICC events, including the past two ICC World Twenty20 titles. The 23-year-old was the fifth highest wicket-taker of the 2012 event with six scalps.

"International Women's Day provides a great time to recognise the continual development of women's cricket and the great progress the game continues to make. The game at the top level is more professional than ever and there are a great many more opportunities for young girls and women to be involved in the sport at any level," she said.

(Posted on 08-03-2014)