Muscat – With anticipation mounting, the Oman women’s cricket team is primed for competition in the inaugural ACC Women’s Premier T20 Cup 2024, scheduled to take place in Malaysia from February 10-18.
A total of sixteen teams, including Oman, will fiercely contend for a coveted place in the final, where the finalists will clinch qualification for the ACC Women’s T20 Asia Cup 2024.
Experienced campaigner Priyanka Mendonca has been bestowed with the captaincy, supported by Akshada Gunasekar as her deputy.
The team’s journey commences on February 10 with a clash against Japan, as they navigate through Group B alongside neighbouring UAE, Japan, and China.
Head Coach Damith Warusavithana exuded confidence in his squad, highlighting their rigorous preparation spanning over the past 6-7 weeks, comprising conditioning camps, skill enhancement sessions, and intense practice matches.
Warusavithana said, “The team boasts a blend of vibrant talent and seasoned campaigners, who have showcased their mettle in various ACC and regional tournaments. We remain optimistic and are geared to exhibit our finest cricket to secure advancement into the competition’s knockout phase.”
The newly appointed women’s team head coach lauded Oman Cricket’s Cricket4Her initiative, attributing it as instrumental in fostering women’s cricket across Oman.
He said, “The softball tournament held earlier saw the participation of 16 teams and allowed us to bring in more women playing the sport. The ongoing hardball domestic league, featuring ten participating teams, not only bolsters our player pool but also ensures the integration of top-tier talent into the national fold.”
Oman previously graced the stage of the ACC Women’s T20 Championship in June 2022 in Malaysia, a tournament subsequently discontinued by the ACC.
Looking ahead, Warusavithana underscored Oman Cricket’s commitment to regular international engagements for its national team, including bilateral tournaments, aimed at providing players with invaluable exposure and experience.
In addition to the four teams in Group B, the tournament features opponents across Group A (Thailand, Myanmar, Kuwait, Singapore), Group C (Indonesia, Malaysia, Bahrain, Qatar), and Group D (Nepal, Hong Kong, China, Maldives).
The top two teams from each group will progress to the quarter-finals, with the victorious teams advancing to the semi-finals.
Oman Squad: Priyanka Mendonca (Captain), Akshada Gunasekar (Vice-Captain), Cynthia Saldanha, Sakshi Shetty, Nitya Joshi, Trupti Pawde, Alifiya Sayed, Sani-e-Zehra, Sameera Khan, Shreya Prabhu, Amanda DCosta, Hina Javed, Sushama Shetty, Sahana Jeelany.