Women’s cricket must not be left behind after lockdown, says Heather Knight

Heather Knight voiced her concern at women’s sport becoming an afterthought once some sort of normality resumes but the England captain is hopeful that momentum built at the T20 World Cup will not be lost.

England captain Heather Knight hopes women’s sport is not ignored after coronavirus break.

It has been a revolutionary past few years for women’s cricket, exemplified last month when 86,174 people packed into the Melbourne Cricket Ground to watch Australia retain their T20 crown by beating India in the final.

But the onset of coronavirus has led to a shutdown of professional cricket in this country until at least July 1, delaying England’s limited-overs matches against India, which were scheduled to start at the back end of June.

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There has been plenty of speculation at when and how the men’s team can resume this summer and while Knight can see why they are one of the top concerns, she wants to avoid her side being put on the backburner. Asked about the possibility of being left behind, Knight said: “That’s the worry in women’s sport across the board, not just in cricket.

KEEP US AROUND: England captain Heather Knight in action during the Women's Ashes Test match at Taunton in July last year. Picture: Mark Kerton/PA

“We’ve obviously got to accept that the most commercially viable parts of the game will be given priority.

“But we’re making sure that the women’s game gets a bigger voice and we’re given the same sort of chance to get back playing as the men are.

“I guess it’s making sure that this has as little impact as possible in the women’s game.

“I’m sure there will be some impact as there is in many walks of life. That’s just the way of society at the moment.

“But I’m hopeful that when we do get going again, the game won’t be affected too much and hopefully people will really support it.”

There are reasons for optimism, not least because of the crowd that turned up for that match at the MCG.

Knight said: “I’ve only ever seen it like that for a Test match, that was pretty cool knowing it was for a women’s game.

“I just hope it was not just a one-off event and that support continues and the people that came to watch and enjoyed will continue to do so, not just in Australia but all over the place.”

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