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The Hundred breaks new ground in professional UK women’s sport with first-ever women’s player draft

The Hundred
The Hundred
©ECB
 

The Hundred will return in 2023 with the first women’s player draft in a major UK sport.

Teams will be looking to select the best players from around the globe ahead of a summer competition full of world-class cricket and family-friendly entertainment.

Running alongside the men’s draft, the historic moment will see at least 32 domestic and overseas women’s players drafted, as teams look to build a winning squad.

Talking about the women’s draft, Beth Barrett-Wild, Head of The Hundred Women’s Competition, said, “Introducing the draft represents another landmark moment for women’s sport in this country, as The Hundred continues to break new ground and accelerate professionalism within women’s cricket.

The impact of The Hundred on the women’s game after just two editions of the competition has been enormous, generating unprecedented levels of visibility, making household names of our brilliant female players, and driving performance standards.

The inclusion of a draft going into year three builds on all of this. It demonstrates progress off the field, and also acts to support all eight teams in creating evenly balanced squads on the field, with the aim of delivering the most exciting contest yet for fans to enjoy.”

London Spirit’s Heather Knight, said, “It is brilliant news that The Hundred will be holding the first-ever draft in the women’s game, and it’ll be fascinating to see who is first pick! We’ve already talked about it as a playing group – it’s really exciting and I think we’ve seen in the men’s game that drafts really get people discussing and debating selection, so it’s great that the women’s competition will be part of that conversation.”

How it works

Retention

  • Before the draft, teams will be able to retain up to four players from their 2022 squads during the retention window which opens next month.
  • Each team can only retain a maximum of three “marquee players” (England Women’s central contract / overseas) at this point, of which they can sign no more than two England or two overseas players.

Draft

  • The Draft itself will see the teams select a minimum of four players to take their squads to a total of eight signed players by the end of the draft process.
  • Who gets to pick first will be decided by the reverse order of the final 2022 standings, meaning Welsh Fire will go first and Oval Invincibles last.
  • Finally, each side will get one “right to match card” to use during the draft. If one team picks a player who did not play for them in 2022, the player’s previous team can re-sign them as long as they have a vacant slot in their squad at the same salary band.
  • Players will be selected consecutively in categories set by salary bands; both the women’s and men’s salaries will stay the same as 2022.

Open Market

  • Following the draft, teams will sign their remaining seven players on an open market basis to complete their Hundred squads for 2023.

Across the three stages, each team is allowed to sign a maximum of three England Women’s central contract players and three oversees players. The men’s and women’s overseas wildcard draft will not take place in 2023.

© Cricket World 2022