ECB Transform Women & Girls' Cricket

Update from Clare Connor

Transform Women’s & Girls’ Cricket Update - a Message from Clare Connor

Following the ECB Board approving the breakdown of the initial investment of £20m across the 4 activities within the Transform Women’s & Girls’ Cricket priority on Tuesday, I am now able to provide a full update on progress and thinking regarding Regional Centres of Excellence and women’s County cricket. Thank you for your patience, and we now look forward together to put plans into action.

Regional Centres of Excellence

Following on from recent meetings with you, we aim to meet with all Counties again during September. These “Formation Meetings” will be on a region by region basis with the FCCs and National Counties in each region. Ahead of these meetings we will share a draft Centre of Excellence (CoE) Consortium Agreement document for your review and to allow you to feedback any questions or suggestions. The meetings will then provide the opportunity to discuss the Consortium Agreements further and consider the next steps in the CoE process. Following the Formation Meetings in September, we would like to have all Consortium Agreements signed by the end of October. The signing of the Consortium Agreements will allow the recruitment of a Director of Women’s Cricket (DoWC) for each region to begin, with ECB providing support with this recruitment process. If a region is able to sign their Consortium Agreement earlier than this, they would obviously be in a position to start their DoWC recruitment sooner.

Centres of Excellence & The Hundred - Women’s Competition

As you will recall, the 8 regional women’s & girls’ Centres of Excellence geographically align with the eight women’s teams that will compete in The Hundred. It is therefore proposed that the two components interact as much as possible. In particular, it is anticipated that this interaction will hinge on the collaboration of coaching and support staff personnel across the two structures. As the “year-round opportunity”, we anticipate the Centre of Excellence structure driving the recruitment process for the majority of coaches & support staff. This will then present an opportunity for the Team Board of the “paired” women’s team in The Hundred to sub-contract these people. It is anticipated that the Centres of Excellence will recruit their coaching and support staff during Q2, 2020, in time for deployment to support The Hundred women’s teams in July 2020.

As we all are aware, The Hundred – Women’s Competition and the CoE process are currently are operating to slightly different timelines due to the need for the imminent appointments of Head Coaches for The Hundred – Women’s Competition. As you recently heard from Beth, the Head Coach needs to be in place by the end of August to identify the 2 England women’s players per team.

Women’s County Cricket

Where we had the most debate during our meetings with you was around the future of the women’s County game. In many Counties, women’s club cricket has not been sustainably developed and in those Counties, women’s County cricket is the only available playing opportunity of any standard, played with any degree of frequency. Women’s County cricket is therefore being used in many parts of the country as an entry level competition and participation experience. This cannot continue and we will be failing female recreational players if we do not address hardball club cricket with real commitment - ECB and Counties alike.  However, whilst we support you to develop the club game, we understand the need for women’s County Cricket to continue. ECB will therefore run a women’s County T20 competition in 2020 and 2021:

  • Counties will be asked to confirm whether they will be entering the County T20 competition. An entry form will be circulated in due course; please DO NOT confirm your wish to enter by replying to this email.
  • In 2020 the competition will most likely be across Sundays throughout May and June.
  • For 2020 and 2021 ECB will continue to fund Counties on a similar basis to 2019, with monies being provided to support travel, accommodation and hosting costs.
  • The on-going need for the continuation of an ECB organised Women’s County T20 competition will be reviewed again during 2021.


Further details regarding the entry process, funding and competition structure will follow shortly. Proposed 2020 Playing Schedule Given the proposed timeline for the establishment of the CoE and recruitment of staff outlined above, the 2020 playing season is broadly outlined as follows: 

  • May/June – Women’s County T20
  • June/July – England Women’s International series
  • 17 July-14 Aug – The Hundred – Women’s Competition
  • Late Aug/Sept – Regional Centre of Excellence 50-over competition
  • Sept – England Women’s International series


Kia Super League We know that a number of you involved in the KSL have raised concerns regarding KSL staff who will be out of contract at the end of this season and ahead of the new roles and opportunities becoming available within the CoE structure. Following correspondence with each KSL Host we are aware of the individuals that this affects and are of course very sympathetic to the situation. We are unfortunately not in a position to commence recruitment for CoE roles until we have the signed Consortium Agreements in place. For information we would also envisage all roles within the CoE structure being advertised and recruited via an open recruitment process. We will be in touch again shortly to arrange dates for the Formation Meetings with each region in September. If you have any queries in the meantime please do not hesitate to get in touch. Kind regards,


Managing Director, Women’s Cricket

Posted on Wednesday 7th August 2019, in Latest News