Vanuatu National Women’s Team celebrating a wicket in the 2017 qualifiers in Japan

Vanuatu will be hosting the biggest single women’s sporting event it has ever seen from May 6th to May 11th in Port Vila with over 84 international female cricketers from six different countries taking part in the ICC Women’s World T20 East – Asia Pacific (EAP) Qualifier.

The Women’s World T20 EAP qualifier is the first of two qualification rounds for the ICC Women’s Twenty20 World Cup with the top team progressing to both the 2019 ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier and the 2020 Women’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier tournaments.

Vanuatu cricket has not hosted any international cricket tournaments since 2012 and local tournament director also VCA CEO, Shane Deitz, expressed that this will be a great opportunity to promote not just women’s cricket but also promote the inclusion of women in sports in Vanuatu.

“Being given the opportunity to host this tournament will undoubtedly promote the profile of not just women’s cricket but cricket in general and we are hoping that this will in turn boost the inclusion and participation of women in sports in Vanuatu,” he said.

Deitz also said that hosting this tournament calls for an upgrade of the ground to allow the international women’s cricket teams that are participating to play on a world class facility.

“Vanuatu cricket is investing four million vatu to renovate and upgrade our grounds to host this tournament so we have a world class facility for our women to play on and also for our cricket future,” Deitz said.

“This is just the start of a lot of international cricket to come to Vanuatu over the next five to ten years and it would be great to have more international cricket out here so the people of Vanuatu can support their international teams on home ground,” he said.

Featuring in this tournament is 2017 champions, Papua New Guinea, along with Samoa, Japan, Vanuatu and the inclusion of Indonesia and Fiji who were absent from the 2017 qualifier in Japan.

The Vanuatu National Women’s Cricket team will be playing on home grounds and Deitz is confident about their preparation and he is urging the general public to be part of the tournament to show support for the team.

“I know the girls have been working very hard under coach Eddie Mansale for a very long time and they will represent the people of Vanuatu with passion and pride so I am encouraging everyone to come and support your international women’s cricket team,” he concluded.

The tournament will commence on Monday May 6th and will conclude on Saturday May 11th.

Raymond Nasse

Sports Editor

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