Full-fledged season, more televised matches & a three-week Sydney hub – WBBL06 fixtures announced

Kirby Short (L) and Beth Mooney pose with the WBBL trophy. © Getty Images

Cricket Australia released a complete 59-match Women’s Big Bash League schedule on Wednesday (July 15) with matches to be held in each team’s home city. The venues will be subject to change based on the COVID-19 situation in each host city.

The sixth season of the WBBL, scheduled to begin in October, is set to be the second standalone season with more broadcast matches than before.

While there were fears that the tournament would be shortened or held alongside the men, WBBL06 has retained its October-November time-slot and will feature a full 59 matches. The tournament, however, will be played over a six week period – one week less than last season – concluding days before the men’s event begins on December 3.

WBBL06 will kick off on October 17 with a repeat of last year’s final between Brisbane Heat and Adelaide Strikers at the Allan Border Field, including three other matches – one at the same venue, and two in Perth. The second weekend will see matches hosted in Adelaide and Tasmania, before action shifts to Sydney for a three-week period.

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Considering all the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic and the potential travel restrictions that could be put in place, CA have attempted to create some flexibility in the schedule by bringing all eight teams to the same state. Matches in Sydney will take place across three venues – North Sydney Oval, Blacktown International Sports Park and Hurstville Oval.

The league phase will then come to a close with matches in Melbourne.

Of the 59 matches – 56 league games, plus three finals – 26 will be televised while the remaining will be streamed on the CA app.

“Our clubs should be commended for their determination and commitment to delivering a full 59-game season for WBBL|06, along with the commitment shown to the WBBL from our broadcast partners Seven and Foxtel to bring more of the WBBL action live to TV screens across the country than any of the previous five seasons of the competition,” CA’s head of Big Bash Leagues, Alistair Dobson, said.

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“The WBBL is the world’s best cricket league for women and keeps getting better, which was reflected in a 21 per cent increase in multichannel audiences last season.”

Dobson added that the Sydney-leg of the competition would help add flexibility to the season amid the changing nature of the pandemic. He said the “central location” helps provide options “should the COVID-19 situation affect the flow of the season and we remain vigilant in all aspects of our planning to provide a safe environment for players and staff.”

Dobson also said that he was confident the women’s game could pick up where it left off after that magical night in Melbourne on March 8, when Meg Lanning’s Australian side clinched their fifth T20 World Cup title. He admitted there were challenges to creating the fixtures, but was pleased that matches have been scheduled in “each club’s home market, while also reducing the overall travel burden on clubs.”

No announcements on crowds and tickets were made. The contracting window for players will be announced soon.

Full fixtures:

October 17:
Melbourne Renegades v Sydney Sixers (Allan Border Field)
Brisbane Heat v Adelaide Strikers (Allan Border Field)
Melbourne Stars v Sydney Thunder (Perth)
Perth Scorchers v Sydney Thunder (Perth)

October 18:
Adelaide Strikers v Melbourne Renegades (Allan Border Field)
Brisbane Heat v Sydney Sixers (Allan Border Field)
Hobart Hurricanes v Sydney Thunder (Perth)
Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Stars (Perth)

October 24:
Brisbane Heat v Melbourne Stars (Karen Rolton Oval)
Adelaide Strikers v Sydney Thunder (Karen Rolton Oval)
Perth Scorchers v Sydney Sixers (Tasmania)
Hobart Hurricanes v Melbourne Renegades (Tasmania)

October 25:
Brisbane Heat v Sydney Thunder (Karen Rolton Oval)
Adelaide Strikers v Melbourne Stars (Karen Rolton Oval)
Perth Scorchers v Melbourne Renegades (Tasmania)
Hobart Hurricanes v Sydney Sixers (Tasmania)

October 28:
Perth Scorchers v Adelaide Strikers (Hurstville Oval)
Sydney Thunder v Melbourne Renegades (Hurstcille Oval)

October 29:
Brisbane Heat v Hobart Hurricanes (Hurstville Oval)
Melbourne Stars v Sydney Sixers (Hurstville Oval)

October 31:
Sydney Thunder v Perth Scorchers (North Sydney Oval)
Hobart Hurricanes v Melbourne Stars (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Melbourne Renegades (North Sydney Oval)
Adelaide Strikers v Brisbane Heat (Blacktown)

November 1:
Sydney Thunder v Melbourne Stars (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Adelaide Strikers (North Sydney Oval)
Hobart Hurricanes v Perth Scorchers (Blacktown)
Brisbane Heat v Melbourne Renegades (Blacktown)

November 7:
Hobart Hurricanes v Adelaide Strikers (North Sydney Oval)
Brisbane Heat v Perth Scorchers (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Melbourne Stars (North Sydney Oval)
Melbourne Renegades v Sydney Thunder (Blacktown)

November 8:
Hobart Hurricanes v Brisbane Heat (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Sydney Thunder (North Sydney Oval)
Melbourne Renegades v Adelaide Strikers (Blacktown)
Melbourne Stars v Perth Scorchers (Blacktown)

November 10:
Adelaide Strikers v Perth Scorchers (Blacktown)
Melbourne Stars v Sydney Thunder (Blacktown)

November 14:
Melbourne Stars v Melbourne Renegades (North Sydney Oval)
Perth Scorchers v Hobart Hurricanes (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Brisbane Heat (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Thunder v Adelaide Strikers (Blacktown)

November 15:
Perth Scorchers v Brisbane Heat (North Sydney Oval)
Sydney Thunder v Sydney Sixers (North Sydney Oval)
Melbourne Renegades v Hobart Hurricanes (Blacktown)
Melbourne Stars v Adelaide Strikers (Blacktown)

November 19:
Melbourne Renegades v Brisbane Heat (Junction Oval)
Sydney Sixers v Hobart Hurricanes (Junction Oval)

November 21:
Melbourne Stars v Brisbane Heat (Junction Oval)
Melbourne Renegades v Perth Scorchers (Junction Oval)
Sydney Thunder v Hobart Hurricanes (Melbourne)
Adelaide Strikers v Sydney Sixers (Melbourne)

November 22:
Adelaide Strikers v Hobart Hurricanes (Junction Oval)
Melbourne Renegades v Melbourne Stars (Junction Oval)
Sydney Thunder v Brisbane Heat (Melbourne)
Sydney Sixers v Perth Scorchers (Melbourne)

Semi-final 1 & Semi-final 2: Date & Venue TBD

November 29: Final