USA Cricket have selected 15 for the Women’s T20 World Cup Global Qualifiers to begin on September 10 in Dubai.
This latest team configuration shows further support of young talent by selectors Ritesh Kadu, Jyotsna Patel and Deepali Rokade, as 13 of those named are teenagers, six of whom are debutantes in the women’s senior team.
Included in the announcement was news that reigning Men’s U19 National Champion East Zone head coach Earl Daley, and USA Strength and Conditioning Coach Burt Cockley would be taking the reigns as interim coaches in place of Women’s Head Coach Shiv Chanderpaul, who has prior commitments.
The team announcement comes amid a busy summer for women’s cricket in the USA, a season which began with USA granted ODI status in May, followed by the U19 squad qualifying for the inaugural ICC Under 19 Women’s World Cup in June.
In early to mid July, USA sent a U19 team to the Cricket West Indies Rising Stars Women’s U19 T20 Championship, where USA finished in first place, rarely challenged by any of the island nation teams.
Following the USA Women and Girls 2022 Domestic Pathway events, which ended in early August with the East defeating the West by three games to one, USA hosted West Indies in Lauderhill, Florida for a Women’s U19 T20 series immediately following the Men’s West Indies vs India series at the same venue. USA and West Indies split the first two games before USA ran away with the series, four games to one.
Suhani Thadani, 16 years old and already a veteran of five T20 Internationals, is excited by the inclusion of her peers in the women’s senior national team. ‘It feels great,’ Thadani told Emerging Cricket. ‘While we’ll still miss the experience and wisdom from some of the senior players, I’m sure that we as youth can learn from each other as well, though we do have experienced players guiding us.’
Franchise cricket has also had a big effect on USA Cricket’s women this year, as six unique American cricketers have been selected in franchise leagues since April, starting with four included in the Fairbreak Invitational, and three in the CPL/6ixty. Geetika Kodali, vice captain of the women’s team, is the only member of the team who has been selected for both competitions. Last week, Kodali became the first to take a hat trick in the history of the 6ixty competition.
The success of Kodali in franchise cricket gives hope to other American cricketers, like Thadani. ‘Every cricketer’s dream is always to represent their country, which I’m proud to do,’ Thadani told Emerging Cricket. ‘But I would be honored to get the opportunity to play franchise cricket. It could give me the ability to learn from players all over the world and gain more knowledge from their experience.’
The young team selected for this qualifier, along with recent experiences gained in franchise cricket, certainly sets up USA Cricket to gain some valuable experience ahead of January’s Women’s U19 World Cup in South Africa in January.
Team USA Women’s Squad
Sindhu Sriharsha (Captain)
Geetika Kodali (Vice-Captain)
Sai Tanmayi Eyyunni
Coaching Team: Earl Daley and Burt Cockley (in place of Shivnarine Chanderpaul)
Manager: John Aaron
Selection Panel: Ritesh Kadu (Interim Chair), Jyotsna Patel, Deepali Rokade
Quadrangular T20I Series (all games at Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai)
Wednesday 10th September: USA Women vs Zimbabwe Women. 10am local time
Friday 12th September: Thailand Women vs USA Women. 2pm local time
Saturday 13th September: USA Women vs UAE Women. 2pm local time
ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi
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