‘Put your middle finger up to all those people who have devalued women’s sport’: Cricketers react to Women’s IPL record franchise bids

The Women’s Premier League is on. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Wednesday announced the owners and bids that successfully acquired the five franchises for the tournament’s inaugural edition expected to be played in March.

“Today is a historic day in cricket as the bidding for teams of inaugural #WPL broke the records of the inaugural Men’s IPL in 2008! Congratulations to the winners as we garnered Rs.4669.99 Cr in total bid,” tweeted BCCI Secretary Jay Shah. 

The BCCI announced that the five franchises for the inaugural women’s IPL season were, “Adani 1289 Cr for Ahmedabad, MI 912 Cr (Mumbai), RCB 901 Cr (Bangalore), Capri Global 757 Cr (Lucknow), and JSW 810 Cr (Delhi).”

The sum total of the bids was the talk of the cricket town and some of the premier women’s cricketers took to social media.

“Today is the day where you get to put your middle finger up to all those people who have devalued women’s sport,” wrote England’s Kate Cross. “They have recognised something special is happening and are going to give female cricketers the platform they deserve. Here comes the #WPL.”

India skipper Harmanpreet Kaur would write, “WPL is not just a game changer for women’s cricket in India, but a revolution!”.

“What a time to be part of women’s cricket! Well done to all the team.. this is going to be insane,” former South Africa skipper Dane Van Niekerk wrote.

Jhulan Goswami, who hanged her boots last year after a career spanning for two decades, spoke on Jio Cinema about the league becoming a reality and said, “”Thoda sa late ho gaya, I guess (It happened a little late, I guess).”

“Today marks a historic day for Women’s cricket as the Women’s Indian Premier League (WPL) becomes a reality,” she would write on her social media while thanking the BCCI for making it happen.

Former India captain Mithali Raj, who also called it quits on her career last year, tweeted, “A record-breaking start for the inaugural Women’s Premier League and expected nothing less! It will truly revolutionize women’s cricket as we know it.”

Former Australia international turned commentator Mel Jones was also overwhelmed following the announcement. “When you have no words… but a millions words at the same time,” she wrote.

Earlier this month, BCCI had confirmed that Viacom 18 has won the bid for the media rights for the upcoming Women’s IPL for a whopping Rs 951 crore for five years.

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