The opening weekend of the Rebel WBBL has seen records tumble on and off the field.
Players smashed some of the highest scores the competition has ever seen and audiences both at home and at the ground couldn’t get enough.
More than one million people tuned in to watch the matches on opening weekend, smashing the records that were set last season.
The prime-time match between the Sydney Sixers and Melbourne Stars on Saturday night peaked at 629,000 viewers on Network Ten and had an average audience of 422,500 viewers. This was a 59 per cent increase on last season and was the biggest average audience for a regular WBBL game ever.
On Sunday afternoon, the Sydney Derby clash between the Sixers and the Thunder peaked at 562,000 viewers. Up 43% on last year’s season average.
Across the weekend an average of 313,000 people watched the action, which was up 24% from last season.
The WBBL also ruled social media over the weekend, with #WBBL03 trending at number 1 on Twitter nationally on Saturday and Sunday.
Fans also flocked to North Sydney Oval to watch the action, with 8,726 fans coming through the gates to be treated to some of the best performances the WBBL has seen.
On Saturday, Ashleigh Gardner hit the fastest century in WBBL history, achieving the feat in just 47 balls. She now sits third behind Craig Simmons and Luke Wright for the fastest century in the history of the Big Bash League.
Gardner hit an amazing nine fours and 10 sixes in her innings, including a huge six that sailed 89 metres and one that hit the roof of the stand at North Sydney Oval.
Gardner’s knock and partnership with Ellyse Perry helped the Sydney Sixers set the largest total in WBBL and BBL history. Their score of 4-242 took out top spot only a few hours after the Sydney Thunder became the first WBBL team to crack the 200 run mark.
Suzie Bates also joined Gardner with a century, becoming the fourth player to do so in the WBBL, smashing 102 of 65 balls and helping the Strikers to their first win of the season.
With a huge 2,023 runs scored over just six matches this weekend, Rebel WBBL|03 is shaping up to be the biggest edition of the competition yet.