Welsh Fire Womens Team to Play ALL Home Games at Sophia Gardens in 2021

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The Hundred Women’s Competition will be played across the same eight venues due to host the Men’s Competition in 2021, the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has announced.

The decision has been taken due to the operational implications of COVID-19, with double-headers and increased alignment with the men’s teams providing the Women’s Competition with greater visibility and exposure – which will also include more comprehensive broadcast coverage.

This means that, for the 2021 competition, the Welsh Fire (Tân Cymreig) Women’s team will play all of their home games at Sophia Gardens.

Head of The Hundred Women’s Competition & Female Engagement, Beth Barrett-Wild, said:

“Looking ahead to 2021, it’s clear that the wide-ranging impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the delivery of elite sporting events and society more generally, necessitates a change to our plans from 2020.

“The move to an integrated eight-venue model with the Men’s Competition next summer will simultaneously enable us to reduce our operational risk, protect the delivery of the Women’s Competition, and optimise the opportunity to work with our broadcast partners to provide maximum visibility and exposure for the women’s game.”

Glamorgan Cricket Chief Executive, Hugh Morris commented:

“This is fantastic news for us here at Sophia Gardens. Our ambition remains to make cricket a more accessible sport for women and girls across Wales. Hosting international female cricketers here in the heart of Cardiff will undoubtedly help grow the appeal for cricket in Wales and the South West. We can’t wait to support the Welsh Fire Women’s squad alongside the Men’s team – the more cricket, the better!” 

Cricket Wales Chief Executive, Leshia Hawkins added:

“Selfishly, I am absolutely delighted to see the Welsh Fire Women playing all their home games in Wales in 2021. We have enjoyed seeing Welsh players excelling for the Western Storm in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy this summer and Cricket Wales has its own exciting plans and ambitions to continue to grow the reach and relevance of cricket among women and girls in Wales next year, building on the success and widespread adoption of Women’s soft ball festivals and leagues, plus our rapidly-expanding list of hard-ball teams and girls’ leagues, across the country.

“We must grasp the opportunity that this change to the original scheduling affords us with both hands; The Welsh Fire Women’s team will be packed with global stars and local talent who we see as ideal potential role models for girls in Wales who already love their cricket, or who might be inspired to pick up a bat or ball after seeing them live, or on TV.

“I urge the Cricket family of Wales to get fully behind both teams when they play next summer.” The eight-venue model is due to be reviewed after 2021, with competition organisers keen to learn year on year and, where necessary, refine the model to continue to deliver the optimum structure for The Hundred Women’s Competition, and growth for the wider women’s game.

Fixtures for the competition are set to be confirmed in 2021.  

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