St John's (Antigua), Aug 15 (IANS) The Barbados womens team will participate in the 2022 Commonwealth Games at Birmingham, England as the "representative" side from the West Indies, Cricket West Indies (CWI) has said.
The Commonwealth Games will be held from July 28 to August 8 and the women's cricket tournament will be staged for the first time at Edgbaston.
This follows the CWI board of directors' decision on July 30 to postpone the 2021 T20 Blaze tournament and the 2021 Women's CG Insurance Super50 Cup until 2022. The 2021 CWI T20 Blaze competition was to be the West Indies qualifying tournament for the Commonwealth Games.
"Following the postponement, the Barbados Women's team will be the representative team from the West Indies as a result of their victory in the 2020 CWI T20 Blaze tournament and in line with Commonwealth Games Association Tournament rules agreed by the International Cricket Council (ICC)," CWI said on Saturday.
The decision to postpone regional women's cricket tournaments was taken with the news of the recently announced women's international ODI and T20 fixtures between West Indies and South Africa -- August 31 to September 19 -- and the ongoing logistical challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic requiring multiple teams to be hosted in one country.
"This has made it very challenging to find a suitable scheduling window," CWI said.
"We want to congratulate the Barbados Women's team for being named to represent the West Indies in the Commonwealth Games 2022. This is an historic occasion as for the first time Women's Twenty20 cricket will feature at this prestigious global sporting event, which is a great fillip for our sport and great exposure and opportunity for the players. We wish them all the very best as they compete for the gold medal, and we know they will continue to do West Indies proud," CWI CEO Johnny Grave said.
"It has been a challenging period with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic at our doorstep, and we have been forced to take the decision to postpone the women's T20 Blaze and Women's CG Insurance Super50 Cup for this year. We have however been able to invest in several high performance camps and international fixtures to the women's squad, conducted by Courtney Walsh and his coaching staff. These have been hugely beneficial and we have identified a core group of players who are the best available in the region for the ICC Women's World Cup qualifiers who will benefit from the additional resources that CWI is committing to preparing the West Indies Women's squad."