Lancashire Cricket has revealed that it will be donating £1 (€1/$1) of every ticket sold for its T20 double-header at Emirates Old Trafford on May 25 to women and girls participation initiatives, through the Lancashire Cricket Foundation.
The Thunder will be welcome The Blaze to Manchester’s Emirates Old Trafford in the Charlotte Edwards Cup, as the sides headline a T20 double-header.
Last year, The Thunder became the first women’s side to have played in the main event slot at Emirates Old Trafford, when the side faced Southern Vipers. Lancashire is aiming to provide even more support for the squad in 2023, which includes 12 fully contracted professionals, in addition to three international players that have earned central contracts from the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB).
Pre-season also saw the Thunder travel to Dubai and Mumbai for training camps supported by hotel chain Hilton, which became an official partner earlier this year and launched the ‘No Boundaries’ campaign.
The support for the women’s team is also showcased through the creation of two new Thunder-specific positions, a sports doctor and nutritionist, both of whom specialise in the health of female athletes.
The Thunder will also benefit from a dressing room specific to the team, with the away team area at Emirates Old Trafford now transformed for the women’s team.
Daniel Gidney, chief executive at Lancashire Cricket, said: “This is a really important day in our season and we urge as many people as possible to come along and support our teams, in the knowledge that you will be playing your part in having a positive impact on the future participation of women and girls across the county. It’s what you see, feel and hear that makes you want to be the next Kate Cross, Sophie Ecclestone or Emma Lamb, who have all come through the Lancashire system, so we hope that there will be a fantastic turn out for this doubleheader.
“As a club, we are committed to empowering women and girls who want to play cricket at all levels. We have made big strides over the last few years to provide equality for our women’s teams and we will continue to do so. The support of our commercial partners – particularly Hilton and Sportsbreaks.com – has been crucial and we are looking to involve more of them in our women and girls-specific initiatives moving forwards.”
May 25 will also see Lancashire Cricket host a panel discussion focusing on how women’s sport can better engage commercial partners to help support funding at grassroots and elite levels.
Gidney added: “We are excited to bring thought-leaders from some first-class organisations together to discuss what the future could look like for women’s sport. There is no doubt we are on a strong growth trajectory, there is much more to be done but it’s a really exciting time to be involved in women’s sport both from a performance and also commercial perspective.”