BBL To Be Reduced To 40 League Games From Next Season

BBL To Be Reduced To 40 League Games 

Australia’s Big Bash League will be shortened to ten games per side this summer after Cricket Australia struck a deal with broadcasters to cut back the competition. BBL will feature a reduced 44-match schedule with the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) games to remain at 59 matches.

BBL To Be Reduced To 40 League Games 

CA’s general manager of Big Bash Leagues, Alistair Dobson, said they would continue to review the length of the WBBL and ways to innovate the competition to ensure it remained the top women’s cricket league in the world.

Both Foxtel and Seven had been open to bringing the change in sooner, but a number of deals had to be struck with club sponsors, and to alter venue arrangements. However, the general feel across most stakeholders was a shorter season would lead to better competition with increased ratings and exposure for each match.

“A shortened BBL will allow us greater flexibility to ensure we can deliver the best possible fixture for clubs and fans while providing a platform that allows players to continue to produce the world-class levels of cricket we’ve seen over the duration of the tournament,” he said.

No changes have been made to the WBBL schedule, with the world’s best players set to compete across 59 matches (56 regular season matches plus 3 finals) in the ninth season of the tournament. Full fixtures, including start and end dates for both the BBL and WBBL, will be confirmed in due course.

CA is banking on the notion of drastically increasing the pay for the best overseas talent to $110,000 for the season to try and entice them to the competition.

“Whilst no changes have been made to the WBBL schedule, it’s vital that we make sure the tournament continues to be at the forefront of T20 Leagues as the global women’s game continues to evolve at a rapid rate.”

“As a League, we’re always reviewing and looking at ways we can evolve, adapt and innovate, and as part of that, we’ll continue to consider the structure of the WBBL season,” added Dobson.

From May 15, a week-long retention window will commence for the first time. Clubs will be able to re-sign up to 12 BBL and 10 WBBL players from their previous season’s primary lists, excluding overseas and local replacement players.

The BBL and WBBL Contracting Embargo Periods will lift on May 22, with the Trade Period also commencing. In another first, Clubs will be able to trade Draft picks in any of the four rounds of the Overseas Player Drafts. Each club will be required to have at least one selection in each round of the Drafts.

“We’re looking forward to seeing what impact the introduction of retention windows and the ability for clubs to trade draft picks has, in conjunction with the existing Trade Period. Clubs’ draft picks will again be confirmed via lottery ahead of the draft, no doubt creating plenty of excitement as Clubs finalise their lists ahead of the season,” concluded Dobson.

Confirmation of the trade period – that will run from May 22-November 30 for the BBL, and May 22-October 12 for the WBBL – will also see the mooted Adam Zampa and Sam Harper exchange between the Stars and Renegades allowed to be processed.

In the WBBL, the Strikers, Heat and Renegades each have three list spots available during the retention window, the Sixers have four, the Hurricanes, Scorchers and Thunder five and the Stars six. Full fixtures for each competition are expected to be announced in the coming months.

CHECK: BBL Winners List All Season, Player of the Match, Series – Included