The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have announced the England women’s touring party for the three-match One-Day International (ODI) and three-match Twenty20 International (T20I) series in South Africa in February.
Ten years after making her ODI debut against India at Lord’s, Sussex wicket-keeper batsman, Sarah Taylor, is in line to win her 100th ODI cap in the match at Centurion on Friday, 12th February.
Charlotte Edwards will captain the 15-player squad, which sees a return for her Kent teammate, Tammy Beaumont.
Nine players who are currently taking part in the inaugural Rebel Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) in Australia will join their England team-mates in South Africa at the end of January.
The full squad will then spend 10 days together in a preparation block at the High Performance Institute, in Potchefstroom, before the ODI series gets underway on 7th February in Benoni.
The tour will be the first international series for England Women’s Head Coach, Mark Robinson, since his appointment to the role in November.
“I can’t wait to get going with the players in South Africa. Having started to work with some of them, having watched recent footage and through following the progress of those playing in the WBBL, there is no doubt that this is a hugely talented squad with enormous potential,” he said,
“I am relishing the prospect of helping them unearth even more of that potential and to seeing them develop in their next chapter as professional cricketers.
“The ICC Women’s Championship table is currently very tight so the next twelve months are vitally important for us. We need to hit the ground running in the three ODIs against South Africa, who we know will pose a strong challenge on home soil. I am excited to see what this England team can do.”
The three ODIs will form England’s fourth round of matches in the ICC Women’s Championship, and will be played on 7th, 12th and 14th February in Benoni, Centurion and Johannesburg. England women are currently in fifth position in the ICC Women’s Championship (the qualification tournament forthe 2017 ICC Women’s World Cup in England) and will be looking to record a series victory in South Africa to leapfrog their hosts, who currently sit in fourth place.
The two sides will then play three T20Is in Paarl, Cape Town and Johannesburg on 18th, 19th and 21st February, with the final two fixtures being played as doubleheaders with South Africa and England men at Newlands Cricket Ground (Cape Town) and Bidvest Wanderers Stadium (Johannesburg).
– African News Agency (ANA)