World champs set for WBBL Big Weekend

26 November 2018

Australia's World T20 winning heroes celebrate in Antigua before dash back to Melbourne for WBBL|04 opening weekend

With the World T20 trophy now safely in their keeping, Australia's triumphant women's cricket team are ready to make the dash back to Melbourne for the opening weekend of the Rebel WBBL.

Meg Lanning's team sealed an incredible fourth title from six events in Antigua on the weekend, thumping fierce rivals England by eight wickets.

Australia romp to fourth World T20 title

The 15-player squad had a chance to relax and soak up the victory on Sunday – which had been set aside as a reserve day, lest weather had interfered with the final – and they'll board a flight to Melbourne (via London) later on Monday.

The Australians are set to touch down on Wednesday evening Australian time, with two days to recover – and celebrate their win with friends and family – before the opening day of WBBL|04 at Junction Oval on December 1.

"I'm really looking forward to it actually," Australia vice-captain and Thunder star Rachael Haynes said from Antigua on Sunday.

"To get back home and pull on the lime green and black again will be good fun.

"We're really keen to have some success this year as well, so I think having made the semi last year we'll be really keen to get out there and do better this year."

All eight teams will be in action across two days at Junction Oval, starting with a clash between the Perth Scorchers – Meg Lanning's first match for the club, playing alongside Elyse Villani and Nicole Bolton – and the Hobart Hurricanes from 10.40am on Saturday, before the Melbourne Stars meet reigning champions Sydney Sixers, home of Ellyse Perry, Alyssa Healy and Ashleigh Gardner, in the afternoon.

Gardner does it all on biggest stage

On Sunday, Megan Schutt's Adelaide Strikers meet a Brisbane Heat side featuring Jess Jonassen, Beth Mooney and Delissa Kimmince, before Haynes and Nicola Carey's Sydney Thunder take on a Melbourne Renegades side featuring Sophie Molineux, Tayla Vlaeminck and Georgia Wareham.

"I'm really excited, it's a quick turnaround (and) the travel's going to be a bit of a nightmare. But in saying that the WBBL is something all the players look forward to being a part of, we all split off and get to play against each other which is fun," Sixers wicketkeeper Healy said.

"I'm really looking forward to it, the Sixers are a great team to be a part of."

The Sydney Sixers claimed the WBBL|03 title // Getty
The Sydney Sixers claimed the WBBL|03 title // Getty

The Aussies will be joined by a host of their recent World T20 rivals in the Big Bash, including five New Zealanders and six South Africans.

The England cohort, bar the Stars' Georgia Elwiss and Scorchers' Kate Cross who weren't part of their WT20 squad, won't be available for the first weekend due to ECB regulations which stipulate players must have seven days rest after an international tour.

But they're set to feature heavily in the rounds that follow, with stars including Heather Knight (Hurricanes), opener Danielle Wyatt (Renegades) and up-and-coming 'keeper Amy Jones (Scorchers) among those signed to clubs this season.

2018 ICC Women's World T20  

Australia squad: Meg Lanning (c), Rachael Haynes (vc), Nicole Bolton, Nicola Carey, Ashleigh Gardner, Alyssa Healy (wk), Jess Jonassen, Delissa Kimmince, Sophie Molineux, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Elyse Villani, Tayla Vlaeminck, Georgia Wareham

November 9: Australia beat Pakistan by 52 runs

November 11: Australia beat Ireland by nine wickets

November 13: Australia beat New Zealand by 33 runs

November 17: Australia lost to India by 48 runs

November 22: Semi-final: Australia beat West Indies by 71 runs

November 24: Final: Australia beat England by eight wickets

Filed Under

Rebel WBBL|04