First Women's FTP: India to play home Test after 9 years

The significance of having an FTP lies in the fact that all boards and team managements would have a clarity on what lies ahead for them.

Published: 16th August 2022 11:11 PM  |   Last Updated: 16th August 2022 11:11 PM   |  A+A-

india women cricket team

Indian cricket team. (File Photo @BCCIWomen)

Express News Service

AS the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the first-ever women's Future Tours Programme (FTP) for the upcoming World Championship cycle, the biggest talking point for India is the fact that they would be playing a Test at home for the first time since 2014.

They are set to host both England and Australia for a multi-format series in December 2023, which will include a Test match each. Although it is not a part of the FTP, in the schedule confirmed by Cricket Australia, India women will also tour Australia in January 2026, where they will be playing a Test match.

The other notable point in the fixtures is that India would be touring South Africa to take part in a T20I tri-series featuring the hosts and West Indies, which should give them ample time to get acclimated to the conditions before the 2023 T20 World Cup. The significance of having an FTP lies in the fact that all boards and team managements would have a clarity on what lies ahead for them, which has not been the case so far. Teams can plan long-term and build for the future, knowing who they play when for the next three years.

Between September 2022 and January 2025, India are scheduled to play 2 Tests, 24 ODIs, and 33 T20Is, apart from the two T20 World Cups (SA 2023, Bangladesh in October 2024) and the 2022 Asia Cup (to be held in October).  While seven of the bilateral series scheduled would be a part of the World Championship cycle, India would be playing England and Australia which are not a part of it. India would also be hosting Ireland for the first time for three ODIs and as many T20Is in January 2025. Excluding the Asia Cup and T20 World Cups, India would be playing Australia the most — 22 games across formats — followed by England (10) and South Africa (8) as per the FTP. They will play Ireland, New Zealand and Bangladesh the least (6), but the boards could schedule tours in the future as well.

As has been the case, India will not play Pakistan outside of the global tournaments and Asia Cups. The last time they played a bilateral series was in 2006 when Pakistan toured India. In the 2014–2016 cycle, when India forfeited, ICC awarded points to Pakistan as a result of which the former had to take part in the qualifiers. During the last cycle, ICC split points and both the teams qualified directly. In this edition, with ten teams, each side will play eight other teams, in which India-Pakistan is not scheduled.

Apart from India, the significant development as far as women's Tests are concerned is that South Africa will play a multi-format series in Australia (February 2024) and (December 2024) host England. The other teams, however, do not have any Tests in their FTP. 



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