WPL 2024: UP Warriorz name Chamari Athapaththu as replacement for Lauren Bell

UP Warriorz have named Sri Lanka skipper Chamari Athapaththu as a replacement for England fast-bowler Lauren Bell ahead of 2024 season of the Women’s Premier League (WPL).

New Delhi, Jan 26 (IANS) UP Warriorz have named Sri Lanka skipper Chamari Athapaththu as a replacement for England fast-bowler Lauren Bell ahead of 2024 season of the Women’s Premier League (WPL).

“English fast bowler Lauren Bell has withdrawn from the upcoming season of the TATA Women’s Premier League 2024. UP Warriorz have named Sri Lanka’s Chamari Athapaththu as a replacement for Bell,” said a statement from the tournament on Friday.

Among the most powerful hitters in the game, Chamari has featured in over 120 T20Is for Sri Lanka. Known for her attacking batting and handy off-spin bowling, Chamari is the only Sri Lankan woman to have scored a century in T20Is.

She has been signed for her base price of INR 30 lakh, which is also the amount Lauren was signed up for by UP Warriorz ahead of WPL 2023. Chamari was recently named as the ICC Women’s ODI Player of the Year, becoming the first female cricketer from Sri Lanka to win an ICC Award.

She was also named captain of both the ICC Women’s ODI and T20I Teams of the Year, announced earlier this week. The all-rounder scored 415 runs in eight ODI matches during 2023, at an average of 69.16 and a strike-rate of 125.37.

Among a year of highlights, her unbeaten knocks of 108 and 140 helped Sri Lanka win the ICC Women’s Championship series against New Zealand 2-1 in Galle in June and July. Her highest score in the T20Is in 2023 was an unbeaten 80 against New Zealand at home which helped Sri Lanka secure a 10-wicket win.

However, her best performance came against England, where she was Player of the Series for her memorable all-round run. This was Sri Lanka’s first-ever T20I series win against the country, especially in England. She also led Sri Lanka to a silver medal in the women’s T20 event at the Asian Games in Hangzhou, China.

WPL 2024 will be held in Bengaluru and New Delhi from February 23 to March 17. The WPL 2024 season will only have single headers, with all matches beginning at 7:30 PM IST. The first 11 matches will be held in Bengaluru, with the remaining nine league matches and the two Playoff matches taking place in Delhi.

Defending champions Mumbai Indians and Delhi Capitals, the runners-up of the first season of WPL, will face off in the opening match at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium. UP Warriorz will begin their WPL 2024 campaign against the Royal Challengers Bangalore on February 24.

UP Warriorz updated squad: Alyssa Healy, Anjali Sarvani, Deepti Sharma, Grace Harris, Kiran Navgire, Chamari Athapaththu, Laxmi Yadav, Parshavi Chopra, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, S Yashasri, Shweta Sehrawat, Sophie Ecclestone, Tahlia McGrath, Danni Wyatt, Vrinda Dinesh, Poonam Khemnar, Saima Thakor, and Gouher Sultana

–IANS

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