There’s little doubt around the fact that the first season of the Women’s Premier League 2023 was a blockbuster. Indian skipper Harmanpreet Kaur though, believes that the tournament long in making was more exciting for some than even the men’s IPL.
“WPL was a game changer for us. That tournament was so good. Everyone loved it back home. The response we got…trust me, some of the audience was more interested in women’s IPL than men’s because it was something new to watch,” Kaur said on Daggers & Lyds podcast. “They really liked it. Hopefully we’ll add more teams. I don’t know when it will happen but eventually it will. We do have very good talent back home. Those girls should get this opportunity.”
Kaur is currently part of the Trent Rockets squad in the ongoing Women’s Hundred season.
Speaking on her experience playing in T20 leagues outside of India, the 34-year-old shared, “When I first got to play WBBL, it was a great opportunity because before that we were all playing domestic cricket. There were no overseas players involved. Then I came for KIA league, then I got to play with English players. You need such opportunities.”
Kaur also opened up on the last time she was in England last year when India beat the hosts in the three-match ODI bilateral series that saw Jhulan Goswami close her international career at Lord’s. Her farewell game would be marred by the criticism of Deepti Sharma and the Indian team after the run out of Charlie Dean at the non-striker’s end, a dismissal that was talked about for long.
Recalling the emotions around the dressing room, Kaur added, “It was a very emotional moment for me. Growing up for us, she was the cricketer leading the Indian women’s cricket team and when I got the opportunity to play with her, she was always very nice to me. She taught me how I can adopt to international cricket. When you have a friend like that, a teammate like that, who can make you learn things quickly, you always respect her. When we got to know that it was her last series, we wanted to win it at all costs. We were really pumped up. We wanted to play our best cricket for her. And I’m really happy that we did really well, won all three games.”