The first Women’s Under 19 international action in USA history will take place this month, as USA Cricket will send a team to St Vincent and the Grenadines to take on the Windward Islands Women’s U19 team in four T20 matches.
“We are pleased to partner with the Windward Islands Cricket Board (WICB) and the St. Vincent and the Grenadines Cricket Association to create a T20 series that would be mutually beneficial to both our under 19 teams,” USA Cricket Board Member and Women and Girls Committee Chair, Nadia Gruny was quoted in the announcement. “In line with our recently launched plan to Shape the Future for Women & Girls in American Cricket to ‘Create increased competitive international match opportunities’, this tour will present a fantastic opportunity for some of the young talent who have stood out on our new domestic pathway this year to get international exposure and a competitive level of cricket in the Caribbean.”
Captaining USA’s squad will be 17 year old USA Women’s veteran fast bowler, Geetika Kodali, a veteran of 11 matches for the USA Women’s team. Geetika, a multi-sport athlete who has learned her cricket in Northern California and now North Carolina, featured in the 2020 Fairbreak XI, along with USA captain Sindhu Sriharsha. Kodali will be joined by women’s teammates Sriharsha and Shebani Bhaskar for the 2022 Fairbreak XI, along with USA Women’s head coach Julia Price, and USA Women’s Coordinator Julie Abbott.
Per USA Cricket’s announcement, the tour is “part of the wider long-term strategic partnership that USA Cricket has with Cricket West Indies.” Earlier this year, it was announced that USA Cricket and Cricket West Indies would co host the 2024 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
The partnership comes as both nations make strides in their respective domestic women’s setups. USA Cricket conducted its inaugural Women’s and Women’s U19 National Championships in 2021, a tournament series that was tailor-made to discover talent and help coordinate and develop hotspots for women’s cricket around the country. In November, the Windward Islands Cricket Board made $25,000 available exclusively for women’s cricket via grants, with the intention of improving player identification, development, coaching, and competitive matches.
Team USA Women’s U19 Squad
Geetika Kodali (Captain)
Laasya Mullapudi (Vice Captain)
Mitali Patwardhan (WK)
Pooja Ganesh (WK)
Sai Tanmayi Eyyunni
U19 Head Coach: Asif Mujtaba
Selection Panel: Ritesh Kadu (Interim Chair), Jyotsna Patel, Deepali Rokade
Monday January 24 – 1st T20 @ 9:00am EST
Tuesday January 25 – 2nd T20 @ 12:30pm EST
Wednesday January 26 – Rest
Thursday January 27 – 3rd T20 @ 9:00am EST
Friday January 28 – 4th T20 @ 9:00am EST
NB – St. Vincent local time is 1 hour ahead of EST.
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