A number of Sixers WBBL players are in line to show their talents on the global stage when the 2017 Women’s World Cup is staged in England this June and July.
The ICC has now announced the fixtures that will include Australia, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies in the tournament beginning on June 24, with 31 matches to be staged across five venues – Lord's, Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Somerset and Gloucestershire.
Sixers Ellyse Perry, Alyssa Healy and Ashleigh Gardner were all selected in the recent ODI series against New Zealand, while South African Captain Dane Van Niekerk and Marianne Kapp are regulars in their national set-ups.
Amy Jones has also played 20 ODIs for England, most recently in November against Sri Lanka in Colombo.
Having claimed their sixth 50-over World Cup title in 2013 with a 114-run win against the West Indies in Mumbai, Australia will be out to make a statement with a strong performance against the reigning Twenty20 World Champions, followed by matches against Sri Lanka and New Zealand at Bristol.
Their run to the final at Lord’s on 23 July will continue with matches against Pakistan, England, India and South Africa, with the top four teams to compete in the semi-finals on 18 and 20 July.
“The World Cup is one of the pinnacle events on the cricketing calendar and it’s shaping as one of the most tightly contested tournaments in recent time,” said National Selector Shawn Flegler.
“We know it’s going to take something special to will a seventh title, but as we saw in the recent Rose Bowl series, there is plenty of talent, fight and resilience in within our current group of players and there’s no doubt they’re up for the challenge.
“We’ve got a great mix of youth and experience in Australian cricket at the moment so picking a squad to defend that title is not going to be easy, but to have calibre of players to choose from that we currently do is really exciting.”
Van Niekerk and Kapp’s South Africa entered the World Cup after making the final of last month’s Women’s World Cup qualifying tournament in Sri Lanka. The pair played the final, but lost on the final ball by 1 wicket in a heartbreaking defeat to India.
Kim Garth’s Ireland also played in the qualifying tournament, but narrowly missed out on one of the four qualifying spots up for grabs.
Australia’s ICC Women’s World Cup 2017 Match Schedule:
Monday 26 June – Australia v West Indies at Taunton
Thursday 29 June – Sri Lanka v Australia at Bristol
Sunday 2 July – Australia v New Zealand at Bristol
Wednesday 5 July – Pakistan v Australia at Leicester
Sunday 9 July – England v Australia at Bristol
Wednesday 12 July – Australia v India at Bristol
Saturday 15 July – South Africa v Australia at Taunton
Tuesday 18 July – Semi Final 1 at Bristol
Thursday 20 July – Semi Final 2 at Derby
Sunday July 23 – Final at Lord’s