Star India allrounder Pooja Vastrakar has landed herself a contract with Women’s Big Bash League where she will represent Brisbane Heat. Vastrakar is a right-arm pace bowler who is also known for her big hits lower down the batting order.
Currently, the 22-year-old is recovering in quarantine after recently testing positive for covid-19. In all likeliness, Vastrakar will remain in the quarantine till Saturday and upon clearing the covid and fitness tests, she will be allowed to travel to UK to join India women’s squad for the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.
She has represented India in two Tests, 23 ODIs and 27 T20Is so far and has taken a combined 46 wickets in them.
Heat coach Ashley Noffke said she is impressed by the youngster’s all-round impact. “Pooja is an outstanding athlete,’’ he said. “She bowls with sharp pace, can find the boundary with the bat down the order and is an absolute jet in the field.”
“We’re very pleased to welcome her to the WBBL and are excited about the experience we can offer her. She’s certainly a player of the future for India and one that we expect can make a difference for the Heat this summer,” she added.
Vastrakar will thus become the third India cricketer after Smriti Mandhana and Poonam Yadav to have played for the Brisbane Heat. The team has now announced 12 of their 15-member squad for the upcoming eighth season of the WBBL.
The league starts from October 13 with Brisbane Heat taking on Sydney Sixers.
The organisers have designed the schedule so as to avoid any clash with the men’s T20 World Cup which will also be held in Australia in October-November.
This time around, matches will be regularly held on Thursday nights throughout the season. “The WBBL evolving into more of a prime time competition is exactly what it merits and it’s a great evolution for the competition,” Alistair Dobson, Cricket Australia’s Head of the Big Bash, was quoted as being said by cricket.com.au recently.