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Wolvaardt hopes Women’s Cricket World Cup will not be scuppered by the coronavirus pandemic

07 July 2020 - 12:34 By Tiisetso Malepa
SA women's cricketer of the year Laura Wolvaardt pictured here in good spirits during a training session at Eden Park Outer Oval in Auckland, New Zealand, before the Covid-19 disruptions. They 21-year-old is studying a Bsc in Life Sciences through the Unviersity of South Africa (Unisa).
SA women's cricketer of the year Laura Wolvaardt pictured here in good spirits during a training session at Eden Park Outer Oval in Auckland, New Zealand, before the Covid-19 disruptions. They 21-year-old is studying a Bsc in Life Sciences through the Unviersity of South Africa (Unisa).
Image: Alan Lee / www.photosport.nz

Laura Wolvaardt has said that the Momentum Proteas have put in a lot of work over the last couple of years in preparations for the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup in New Zealand in January next year.

She hopes that the tournament will not be scuppered by the coronavirus pandemic.

Cricket South Africa (CSA) suspended all domestic activity for three months in March as the deadly Covid-19 disease started to ravage the cricket calendar across the world.

The reigning SA women’s cricketer of the year said she missed the smell of the grass and is excited to return to training after cricket was one of the sporting codes approved by the sports ministry last month to resume activities under strict Covid-19 regulations.

“That tournament (the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup) has been our main focus for the last three and bit years and everything has been building onto that.

“I think that is the really big one on our calendar‚” said the 21-year-old‚ who has been part of the Momentum Proteas squad for the last four years.

“I think as soon as we can start playing and getting back together again‚ it would be full steam towards (preparing for) that tournament‚” said the hard-hitting right-hander from Milnerton in Cape Town.

The men’s Twenty20 Cricket World Cup‚ that is supposed to be held in October and November in Australia‚ faces the threat of postponement when the International Cricket Council (ICC) chiefs meet on Friday.

Cricket chiefs on the powerful India cricket board are reportedly hoping for the ICC to push the Twenty20 World Cup forward in order to open up a window for the staging of the multi-billion dollar Indian Premier League (IPL) this year‚ which was indefinitely postponed from its traditional March.

Indian media reported that the influential Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has already zeroed in on the end of September-early November window for the IPL‚ which could see the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup postponed.

“Well I guess no one knows what is going to happen. So I think anything could happen at this stage but we will obviously plan as if it is still going ahead and nothing has been said about it.

“Nothing is going to change in our minds. We are still fully convinced it is going to happen and going to prepare for it as if it is happening in January.”

Wolvaardt said she is also looking forward to have another crack in the 2022 Twenty20 World Cup on home soil and the Commonwealth Games to be hosted in Birmingham‚ England‚ later in the same year.

“I think it will be great to regroup again and discuss all the plans moving forward and continue with our ODI plans for the World Cup in January.”

The SA women’s team was scheduled to play an ODI series against their West Indies counterparts in May but the five-match contest in Jamaica and Trinidad was cancelled due to Covid-19.

“It is actually a shame to see the series cancelled but yeah I guess it has given me some time at home to kind of work on specifics from a fitness point of view.”

The tour to the West Indies is the women’s team's second event to be cancelled because of the outbreak after the Australia series suffered the same fate earlier this year.


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