Alongside Gloucestershire the ICC has also announced that Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Somerset and Lord’s will host the competition’s 31 matches starting on June 26th next year – with the Home of Cricket set to stage the final on July 23rd.
It will be the first time that the tournament has been held in England since 1993 when the home side beat New Zealand in the final at Lord’s, revisiting the scene of their triumph in 1973 in the first Women’s World Cup Final against Australia.
Will Brown, GCCC CEO said, “We are absolutely delighted to be chosen as one of the host counties for the ICC Women’s World Cup in 2017; it is a major coup for the Club and will bring yet another world class event to the region. We are hugely thankful for all of the support we have received to achieve this; local councils, commercial and educational partners as well as the recreational game have all played significant roles in making this happen.
“Being a host for the ICC Women’s World Cup in 2017 furthers our commitment to developing the Women and Girl’s game and with our confirmation as a Women’s Cricket Super League (WCSL) host only last month we are set well to really push on in this area.
“The allocation of these matches also confirms that over the next 4 years Gloucestershire County Cricket Club are scheduled to host more full One Day International Cricket (Men’s and Women’s) than any other county in England and Wales. We are immensely proud of this achievement and look forward to the growth to grass roots cricket this should drive as well as the benefits it will clearly bring to the County side.”
Steve Elworthy, ECB’s Director of Events said: “This is a very exciting time for the women’s game in this country and staging a Women’s World Cup here will really help drive interest and participation in women’s cricket at every level.
“It’s critical we use this event to reach out to young children in particular so we’ve moved the tournament start date to earlier in the summer – a decision which will help our host venues encourage attendance by engaging with schools in the build-up to the event.”
Clare Connor, ECB’s Director of England Women’s Cricket and Chair of the ICC Women’s Cricket Committee, said: “At a global level, the introduction of the ICC Women’s Championship has made our game more competitive and exciting than ever before. It has created global context and meaning to all our ODI series whereby the result of every match has a direct impact on qualification for next summer’s World Cup.”
“In this country, last summer’s record-breaking attendances for the Women’s Ashes series showed there is a growing audience and appetite for women’s cricket – we witnessed excellent crowds, including full houses at Chelmsford and Hove, coupled with growing media and commercial interest.
“The launch of the new Women’s Cricket Super League here later this year will give the women’s game another significant fillip and help set the stage for what promises to be a fantastic showcase for our sport next summer. “
Supporters also get the opportunity to see the England Women in action at the Bristol County Ground this summer, when the club hosts England Women vs Pakistan Women in an IT20 on Sunday 3 July – find out more on the Gloucestershire Cricket website here.