Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana and Deepti Sharma to lead sides in Women's T20 Challenge
Women's T20 Challenge will be held in Pune © Getty Images
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has announced the squads for three teams in the Women's T20 Challange on Monday (April 16) as the competition returns after a hiatus in 2021. Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana, and Deepti Sharma are announced as the captains of Supernovas, Trailblazers, and Velocity respectively. The three teams will compete in the fourth edition of the tournament from May 23 to May 28 at the Maharashtra Cricket Association (MCA) stadium in Pune.
Each team will have four internationals in their squad, alongside India internationals and domestic stars. These matches will feature international players from Bangladesh to the West Indies. Australia's Alana King, Bangladesh's Sharmin Akther, South Africa’s Laura Wolvaardt, and England's Sophia Dunkley will be making their first appearances in the event. While South Africa's Ayabonga Khaka and Sune Luus, along with West Indies' Deandra Dottin and Hayley Matthews, England's Sophie Ecclestone, Bangladesh's Salma Khatun, and Thailand’s Natthakan Chantham were a part of the previous edition as well, which was held in the UAE in 2020.
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The senior trio of Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami, and Shikha Pandey won’t be seen in action in the upcoming Women’s T20 Challenge. Pooja Vastrakar, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Renuka Singh Thakur, and Richa Ghosh, who were part of India's squad for the ICC World Cup in New Zealand have found a place in the Women's T20 Challenge. S. Meghana, who made her comeback with the series against New Zealand, will also feature in the tournament.
Kiran Navgire and Aarti Kedar, who lit up the Senior Women's T20 Trophy will represent the Velocity side, led by the first-time captain Sharma. India's T20 captain Kaur will oversee the Karnataka duo, Chandu V and Monica Patel for Supernovas in the competition. Odisha's Priyanka Priyadarshini and Maharashtra left-arm pacer Shraddha Pokharkar have also found a place in the Mandhana-led Trailblazers squad.
The fourth edition of the Women's T20 Challenge will comprise of four matches including the final. On May 23, Trailblazers and Supernovas will kick off the proceedings. May 24 will see Velocity play their first match against Supernovas, before squaring off against Trailblazers the following day. The final is scheduled to be played on May 28.
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Supernovas: Harmanpreet Kaur (C), Taniya Bhatia (VC), Alana King, Ayushi Soni, Chandu V, Deandra Dottin, Harleen Deol, Meghna Singh, Monica Patel, Muskan Malik, Pooja Vastrakar, Priya Punia, Rashi Kanojia, Sophie Ecclestone, Suné Luus, Mansi Joshi
Trailblazers: Smriti Mandhana (C), Poonam Yadav (VC), Arundhati Reddy, Hayley Matthews, Jemimah Rodrigues, Priyanka Priyadarshini, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Renuka Singh Thakur, Richa Ghosh, S. Meghana, Saiqa Ishaque, Salma Khatun, Sharmin Akter, Sophia Dunkley, Sujata Mallick, Shraddha Pokharkar
Velocity: Deepti Sharma (C), Sneh Rana (VC), Shafali Verma, Ayabonga Khaka, Kiran Navgire, Kate Cross, Keerthi James, Laura Wolvaardt, Maya Sonawane, Natthakan Chantham, Radha Yadav, Aarti Kedar, Shivali Shinde, Simran Dil Bahadur, Yastika Bhatia, Pranavi Chandra