Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

18 August 2014

South Africa: Women's Cricket - Dawn of the Professional Era

analysis

South Africa's women's cricket team will embark on their first tour as professional cricketers when they travel to the UK for three T20 matches against England and three T20s against Ireland. While expectations should be kept in check, the tour can only be a good thing in the greater scheme of things.

In just a few weeks, the South African women's team will make history. For the first time ever, a mostly professional squad will travel to the UK for their first tour as pro-cricketers. Earlier in the year, Cricket South Africa - thanks to some help from Momentum - announced that they would be expanding their list of centrally contracted women from six to 14.

For the laymen, this means that the women who needed to work while also trying to play international cricket can now focus just on playing cricket. For some, the contracts do still involve a role of ambassador and coaching, as it did with England's "Chance to Shine" contracts. Considering that just a year ago there were no contracts for women, this is a significant step and will signal a new era for the ladies.

It is, however, imperative that expectations remain...

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