WPL 2023, MI vs GG: Five Key Players To Watch Out For
All eyes will be on Harmanpreet Kaur [Source: Twitter]
To the delight of cricket fans across the globe, the much-awaited Women's Premier League commences on Saturday, with Mumbai Indians taking on Gujarat Giants in the opening encounter.
Considering the kind of lineups these two teams have, we expect a nail-biting clash in the iconic DY Patil stadium in Mumbai.
So, before the fascinating face-off begins, let's analyse and find out the top five players who can set the stage on fire tonight.
Harmanpreet Kaur: Mumbai Indians
Harmanpreet Kaur was bought by Mumbai Indians for INR 1.8 Crores in the WPL auction. Kaur, who leads India Women across formats in international cricket, will captain the Mumbai-based franchise in the showpiece event.
Regarded as one of the cleanest strikers of the ball, Kaur has 3058 T20I runs to her name in 151 appearances. She recently enjoyed prolific success in white-ball cricket, helping India win many crunch games through her incredible finishing skills.
Recently, she grabbed a million eyeballs by putting up a hitting exhibition against the mighty Aussies in the T20 World Cup semifinal. Although she failed to finish the game for India, the dynamic right-hander earned accolades from all corners of the world for her sensational batting.
Ashleigh Gardner: Gujarat Giants
How far the Gujarat Giants will go in the Women's Premier League will largely depend on Ashleigh Gardner, who has been a brute force with both bat and ball for Australia Women in international cricket.
Ashleigh Gardner will be the trump card for Gujarat Giants [Source: Twitter]
Unarguably the finest T20I all-rounder in Women's cricket, amassing 1176 runs and scalping 53 wickets in 73 outings. Furthermore, she is coming on the back of a sensational World Cup, where she garnered 110 runs and claimed 10 wickets in six matches.
Considering her ability and experience, we expect the 25-year-old to play a key role for the Giants tonight.
Natalie Sciver: Mumbai Indians
Regarded as one of the finest all-rounders of this generation, Natalie Sciver has established herself as a stalwart in Women's cricket.
Nat Sciver had a tremendous World Cup [Source: Twitter]
The stylish right-hander has amassed 2175 T20I runs, including twelve fifties, in 108 outings. Furthermore, she has also proved her mettle with the ball, scalping 79 wickets at a surreal economy of 6.49.
Being equally effective with bat and ball, Sciver will certainly be crucial for MI, who will aim at getting a winning start to their WPL 2023 campaign.
Beth Mooney: Gujarat Giants
One of the key members of the rampant Australian T20I side, Beth Mooney will be pivotal for the Giants' success with the bat in WPL 2023.
Beth Mooney in action [Source: Twitter]
The stylish southpaw has the reputation of playing match-defining big knocks in crucial clashes and will certainly emerge as a huge headache for Harmanpreet and co in the tournament opener.
She had a tremendous T20 World Cup recently, finishing the tournament as the top-scorer for Australia with 206 runs, including a magical unbeaten 54-ball 73 in the all-important final against South Africa.
So, we expect the 29-year-old to sustain her dream run in the lucrative league.
Amelia Kerr: Mumbai Indians
The promising New Zealand all-rounder possesses an incredible ability to bamboozle the opponent batters with her guile and accuracy. Furthermore, she can also contribute handy runs with the bat and hence will be vital for the Mumbai-based franchise in the WPL 2023.
Amelia Kerr [Source: Twitter]
Speaking of Kerr's recent form, she emerged as the second most successful for the White Ferns, scalping six wickets at an unbelievable economy of 5.05.
However, she had a forgettable tournament with the bat and will hope to turn things around in the inaugural Women's Premier League.