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Women's Twenty20 Cup

Women's Twenty20 Cup
AdministratorECB
FormatTwenty20
First edition2009
Latest edition2023
Next edition2024
Tournament formatRegional groups
Number of teams35
Current championRegional winners
Most successfulKent (3 titles)

The Women's Twenty20 Cup, known for sponsorship reasons as the Vitality Women's County T20, is a women's Twenty20 cricket competition organised by the England and Wales Cricket Board. Until the end of the 2019 season, teams were organised in tiered divisions, with a national winner; since, teams have been organised into regional groups.[1]

The competition began in 2009 and now features 35 teams, drawn mainly from the historic counties of England, plus Wales and Scotland. Until 2019, the competition operated alongside the Women's County Championship, but after a restructuring in women's domestic cricket in 2020, between 2021 and 2023 it was the only official tournament featuring county sides, with regional teams competing in new 50-over, Twenty20 and The Hundred competitions.[2]

As teams competed in regional groups in 2023, with no national finals, there was no overall winner. The last national champions are Warwickshire, who won the 2019 competition. The most successful side in the history of the competition is Kent, with 3 wins.[3]

History

The Women's Twenty20 Cup began in 2009, with teams competing in eight tiered divisions of four. Surrey were the inaugural Division 1 champions.[4] Overall, eight teams have won the tournament, with Kent being the most successful side, winning the tournament three times, in 2011, 2013 and 2016.[3] Berkshire reached the final of the competition three times in a row between 2010 and 2012, but only managed to win the tournament in 2010.[3] After the 2019 season, the 50-over Women's County Championship was ended, in favour of a regionalised structure for domestic women's cricket. However, the Twenty20 Cup was allowed to continue, with central funding from the ECB, until at least 2021, with counties effectively acting as "feeder" teams to the new regional sides.[5][6] However, the 2020 edition of the tournament was postponed and eventually cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[7] The tournament returned for 2021, with a regional format, and is set to continue in 2022.[8] As the tournament now operates on a regional structure, with no overall winner, Warwickshire, who won in 2019, were the final national champions.[9]

The competition formed the women's county structure with the 50-over Women's County Championship between 2009 and 2019. It has also ran alongside composite and regional tournaments such as the Super Fours, the Women's Cricket Super League and, currently, the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy and the Charlotte Edwards Cup.[10] Following the ending of the Women's County Championship in 2019, various counties set up regional tournaments such as the Women's London Championship and the East of England Women's County Championship; however, the Twenty20 Cup was the only official county-based competition in England between 2021 and 2023.[7] The ECB Women's County One-Day was introduced in 2024 as a second official county competition.[11]

Structure

The Women's Twenty20 Cup has varying formats and number of teams over its history. In 2009, 32 teams took part divided into eight tiered divisions of four, with the winners of Division 1 being crowned the Champions.[12] In 2010, teams were divided into three regions (Midlands & North, South and South & West), and then further divided into divisions within their regions. The best-performing teams across the three Division Ones progressed to Finals Day.[13] This format was retained until the end of the 2013 season.[14][15][16]

In 2014, teams were divided into four divisions, which were further divided into regional groups of three (and one group of four) each. Each team then progressed into a second group stage to play against teams that finished in the same position in the first round, with the winner of Round 2 Group 1A being crowned the Champions.[17] From 2015, teams were divided into four divisions with promotion and relegation, with the winner of Division 1 winning the tournament.[18][19] In 2017, the number of division was reduced to three, with this format retained until the end of the 2019 season.[20][21][9]

The tournament was cancelled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2021, due to ongoing concerns with the pandemic, as well as limited travel costs, the tournament was organised on a regional basis, with six groups of six, and no overall national winner.[7][22] In 2022 and 2023, the tournament remained organised on a regional basis, with teams now divided into eight groups.[23]

Current teams

In 2024, the 35 teams that will compete in the tournament are organised into 4 regional groups. The teams are divided as follows:[23]

Group 1 Cumbria Derbyshire Lancashire North East Warriors Nottinghamshire Scotland Staffordshire Yorkshire
Group 2 Cambridgeshire Huntingdonshire Leicestershire and Rutland Lincolnshire Norfolk Northamptonshire Shropshire Warwickshire Worcestershire
Group 3 Berkshire Buckinghamshire Essex Hertfordshire Kent Middlesex Suffolk Surrey Sussex
Group 4 Cornwall Devon Dorset Gloucestershire Hampshire Oxfordshire Somerset Wales Wiltshire

Former teams

Team Span Notes
Bedfordshire 2011–2014
Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire 2009–2013 Split into Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire
Cheshire 2009–2019
Durham 2009–2019 Combined with Northumberland to form North East Warriors
Ireland 2012; 2014–2015
Netherlands 2011–2015
North Representative XI 2021–2022
Northumberland 2009–2018 Combined with Durham to form North East Warriors

Roll of Honour

Season Winner Runner-up Leading run-scorer Leading wicket-taker Refs
2009 Surrey Kent Ebony Rainford-Brent (Surrey) 90 Jodie Dibble (Devon); Abbi Aitken (Scotland) 6 [12]
2010 Berkshire Yorkshire Charlotte Edwards (Kent) 229 Isa Guha (Berkshire) 11 [13]
2011 Kent Berkshire Danni Wyatt (Staffordshire) 202 Alice Davidson-Richards (Kent) 12 [14]
2012 Sussex Berkshire Heather Knight (Berkshire) 284 Georgia Elwiss (Sussex) 12 [15]
2013 Kent Sussex Fran Wilson (Somerset) 290 Megan Belt (Kent) 9 [16]
2014 Nottinghamshire Middlesex Clare Shillington (Ireland) 242 Erin Bermingham (Kent) 15 [17]
2015 Sussex Yorkshire Danni Wyatt (Nottinghamshire) 287 Megan Fairclough (Lancashire); Jenny Gunn (Nottinghamshire) 15 [18]
2016 Kent Warwickshire Laura Newton (Cheshire) 272 Nicole Richards (Somerset) 15 [19]
2017 Lancashire Middlesex Jodie Dibble (Nottinghamshire) 260 Clare Boycott (Worcestershire) 14 [20]
2018 Middlesex Sussex Kezia Hassall (Hampshire) 311 Providence Cowdrill (Hampshire); Rebecca Silk (Devon) 15 [21]
2019 Warwickshire Lancashire Sophie Luff (Somerset) 316 Laura Ellison (Durham) 15 [9]
2020 Cancelled[a]
2021 No overall winner[b] Imogen Sidhu (Suffolk) 293 Finty Trussler (Hampshire) 16 [22]
2022 No overall winner[c] Georgie Boyce (Lancashire) 306 Anisha Patel (Warwickshire) 15 [24]
2023 No overall winner[d] Gemma Marriott (Hertfordshire) 203 Bhoomika Bhat (Gloucestershire); Rebecca Tyson (Hertfordshire) 12 [25]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[7]
  2. ^ Hertfordshire, Nottinghamshire, Lancashire, Kent, Gloucestershire and Somerset won their respective groups.
  3. ^ Lancashire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Suffolk, Leicestershire and Rutland, Sussex, Middlesex and Devon won their respective groups.
  4. ^ Lancashire, Warwickshire, Gloucestershire, Sussex, Northamptonshire and Somerset won their respective groups. Middlesex and Kent shared their group title due to rain on their group Finals Day. One group winner was not determined, as the Group 4 Finals Day was abandoned due to rain.

References

  1. ^ "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup Fixtures & Results". Play-Cricket. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  2. ^ "Women's Regional Hubs to play for Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy". the Cricketer. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup". Play-Cricket. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  4. ^ "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup". Play-Cricket. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  5. ^ "NEWS: County Cricket Saved Until At Least 2021 As ECB Promise T20 Cup Funding". CricketHer. 27 July 2019. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  6. ^ "OPINION: Women's County Cricket – The Format That Refused To Say Die". CricketHer. 15 March 2021. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  7. ^ a b c d "Deep Dive: Women's County Cricket in 2021". CricketHer. 22 December 2020. Retrieved 24 December 2020.
  8. ^ "NEWS: Women's County Cricket To Continue In 2022". CricketHer. 24 November 2021. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  9. ^ a b c "Vitality Women's Twenty20 Cup 2019". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  10. ^ "Women's Regional Hubs to play for Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy". the Cricketer. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  11. ^ "ECB Women's County Championship/Season 2024". Play-Cricket. Retrieved 11 March 2024.
  12. ^ a b "Women's County Twenty20 2009". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  13. ^ a b "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup 2010". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  14. ^ a b "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup 2011". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  15. ^ a b "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup 2012". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  16. ^ a b "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup 2013". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  17. ^ a b "ECB Women's Twenty20 Cup 2014". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  18. ^ a b "NatWest Women's Twenty20 Cup 2015". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  19. ^ a b "NatWest Women's Twenty20 Cup 2016". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  20. ^ a b "Vitality Women's Twenty20 Cup 2017". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  21. ^ a b "Vitality Women's Twenty20 Cup 2018". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  22. ^ a b "Vitality Women's County T20 2021". CricketArchive. Retrieved 24 November 2021.
  23. ^ a b "ECB Women's County Championship/Season 2022". Play-Cricket. Retrieved 21 January 2022.
  24. ^ "Vitality Women's County T20 2022". CricketArchive. Retrieved 3 October 2023.
  25. ^ "Vitality Women's County T20 2023". CricketArchive. Retrieved 3 October 2023.
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Women's Twenty20 Cup
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