England captain Heather Knight has welcomed the shattering of considered one of cricket’s glass ceilings after the information that her facet will play a five-day Ashes Test at Trent Bridge subsequent summer season.
The England and Wales Cricket Board and Cricket Australia have agreed to interrupt the longstanding conference that has restricted the ladies’s Test matches to four-day affairs once they meet once more in 2023.
Just six girls’s Tests have taken place worldwide within the final 5 years, all ending in attracts after time ran out, however now the marquee occasion of the multi-format collection can have three further periods to succeed in a extra becoming conclusion. More importantly, it brings parity with a males’s Ashes programme that was collectively introduced on Wednesday morning.
The girls’s Test begins on 22 June, two days after the conclusion of the boys’s Edgbaston opener towards Australia, and represents a primary in England.
And Knight, whose facet will even play T20s on the Kia Oval, Edgbaston and Lord’s for the primary time, provided a ringing endorsement.
“I’m so happy, I feel like I’ve been banging the drum for five days for a long time, so it’s a special moment,” she informed the PA information company.
“It feels like the right time, for five days, for bigger grounds, and it feels like it’s been a long time coming. Last year’s South Africa Test was set up nicely but withered out because of rain and it wasn’t given the chance to finish, so this is a really good step by the boards.
“I probably spent most of my career being grateful for what you’re given. When I started out anything was a bonus, you were just happy to be playing the sport you love for England and not even getting paid, but my eyes have opened a bit more.
“You see the inequalities you’ve gone through and and not really realised. Moving forward on an equal footing is a logical progression.”
Greg Barclay, chair of the International Cricket Council, stated throughout a visit to Lord’s in June that he didn’t imagine Tests shaped “part of the landscape” within the girls’s sport and couldn’t see the format “evolving”.
Those sentiments didn’t go unnoticed and Knight says her facet are dedicated to proving the alternative.
“After those comments we talked about trying to save the format for women, to do everything we can to move the game forward, to keep Test matches going and make them appealing,” she stated.
“We want to do everything we can to move it forward, to take more risks, to make it exciting to watch. Hopefully being at a massive ground like Trent Bridge will attract loads of people and it could be a really lovely occasion.”
England’s males start their 2023 schedule with a four-day Test towards Ireland at Lord’s on 1 June earlier than making an attempt to regain the urn from Australia in a five-match collection that begins on 16 June and ends lower than seven weeks afterward 31 July with video games at Edgbaston, Lord’s, Headingley, Old Trafford and the Oval.
Former England captain Joe Root is obsessed with what lies forward for each groups, telling PA: “Both teams want the Ashes back. With both series on at the same time there’ll hopefully be an Ashes buzz that both teams can tap into and benefit from.
“We’ll be doing our best over five Tests and the women’s team will be trying to come out on top in the multi-format series. I think it works well and their IT20s at Lord’s, Edgbaston and the Oval will be big occasions.
“It’s a really important step for the women’s game. You want as many people as possible to be able to watch and we saw in The Hundred that when the games are played at major venues a lot of people are there to support.
“There are few feelings better in cricket than getting over the line and winning a tight Test match, and it can be frustrating when a draw becomes the only option, so it’s sensible to try and get a result over five days and I don’t see why it should be any different from men’s cricket.”
LV= Insurance Men’s Ashes Series
First Test: Edgbaston, June 16-20
Second Test: Lord’s, June 28-July 2
Third Test: Headingley, July 6-10
Fourth Test: Old Trafford, July 19-23
Fifth Test: Kia Oval, July 27-31
Women’s Ashes Series
LV= Insurance Test Match: Trent Bridge, June 22-26
First Vitality IT20: Edgbaston, July 1
Second Vitality IT20: Kia Oval, July 5
Third Vitality IT20: Lord’s July 8
First ODI: Seat Unique Stadium, July 12
Second ODI: Ageas Bowl. July 16
Third ODI: Cooper Associates County Ground, July 18