Harmanpreet Kaur first Indian to play in WBBL, signs for Sydney Thunder


New Delhi: Sydney Thunders have confirmed the signing of India Women’s cricketer Harmanpreet Kaur for the 2016-17 season of Women’s Big Bash League. The 27-year-old is all set to play in the Women's Big Bash League in Australia after striking a deal with defending champions Sydney Thunder.

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Earlier in June, Board of Control for Cricket in India president Anurag Thakur announced that the Indian vice-captain had successfully completed negotiations with the Australian club.  Thakur took to Twitter on Sunday morning to congratulate Harmanpreet.

Speaking about her signing with the Thunder, Harmanpreet said that being the first Indian player – male or female – to sign for a BBL team was a great moment for her. “It’s a great feeling. The WBBL is a great platform for women's cricketers, being the first player from my country to sign a contract for a BBL club is one of my best moments,” she told the Sydney Thunder wesbite.

She futher added that she was looking at franchises where she could get the most opportunities and Sydney Thunder was the best option available to her. Just like the Indian Premier League (IPL) has a cap of four overseas players, the WBBL has a cap of two overseas players in the playing XI."I was looking at a franchise where I would have opportunities to showcase my talent. That's why I was keen on Sydney Thunder.

My aim is to serve my team to win the WBBL title for the second time in a row. Playing with the best players against the best players is always a great feeling. I would definitely learn a lot of things from them all," Harmanpreet said.Just last month, the Board of Control for Cricket of India (BCCI) had changed their rules and allowed women’s cricketers contracted to them to play in foreign T20 leagues, subject to the approval of the board. BCCI President Anurag Thakur took to Twitter to congratulate Harmanpreet.

Harmanpreet, who is the vice-captain of the Indian women’s cricket team, has scored 992 runs at an average of just over 22 in T20 internationals. She also has 13 T20I wickets to her name.