EXCLUSIVE: England Stars Set For WBBL But Will Miss Final

The big news today is that England stars Lauren Winfield and Kate Cross are heading to WBBL’s Brisbane Heat.

CRICKETher understands that several contracted England players have been given leave to take part in the inaugural Women’s Big Bash, which takes place in December / January; and we can expect further announcements over the next couple of weeks, as the i-s are dotted and the t-s are crossed on individual contracts.

However, ECB sources have also confirmed to CRICKETher one slightly disappointing piece of news: England’s contracted players will be expected to return to Blighty by mid-January in preparation for their tour to South Africa, and so will miss the semi-finals and the final.

This is neither unexpected nor unprecedented – the first duty of England-contracted players is rightly to England; and this kind of thing is common in The Other Game with the IPL.

But it is still a pity for the fans (not to mention the girls themselves) that the calendars could not have been tweaked slightly by just a couple of weeks to allow the England players to participate in the “business end” of the competition.