Skipper T20I in India Harmanpreet Kaur and teen sensation Shafali Verma will represent Manchester Originals and Birmingham Phoenix, respectively, in the first edition of The Hundred in the UK, starting on July 21.
As the 17-year-old Verma, who is No. 1 in the T20 rankings, joins Birmingham Phoenix as a replacement for New Zealand’s Sophie Devine, Sharma will run for the London spirit.
Mandhana, the Indian vice-captain of T20, will form a devastating partnership with Danny Wyatt of England in the Southern Brave, and Rodriguez will be introduced to the Northern superchargers.
Harmanpreet, known for its explosive power, will take part in the opening match when it joins Manchester Originals.
“It’s very exciting that I’m going to start playing in the first game of The Hundred,” said Kaur from the tournament’s official website.
“It will be special to make history, especially with a match for women on such a big field. We have played in front of many crowds in India and it is always a great experience for the players,” she added.
Rodriguez, Kaur, Mandhana and Sharma were also part of the now defunct Kia Super League (KSL) in 2019, England’s internal T20 tournament and Wales cricket, which made way for the women’s hundred.
The 100, which was postponed last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, should start on July 21 with the women’s match between Oval Invincibles and Manchester Originals in London.
Beth Barrett-Wilde, head of the Hundred Women’s Competitions, said: “It’s so good to finally be able to confirm the participation of some of India’s superstars. They are an extremely exciting group of players and they are very competitive.”
“I can’t wait for July 21, I can’t wait for the whole race and I can’t wait for the fans to see these world-class players doing what they do best,” she added.