In a significant development, England captain Heather Knight has opted out of the upcoming Women’s Premier League (WPL) season, leading Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) to swiftly announce her replacement for the tournament.
Knight will be joining the English team on their tour to New Zealand for the white-ball series in March-April. The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) recently presented its players with a choice between national duties and participation in the WPL.
Heather Knight informs RCB about her decision
Having chosen to focus on preparations for the New Zealand series, which begins on March 19, just two days after the WPL final, Knight informed the Bangalore-based franchise of her decision.
She expressed her sentiments on social media, saying, “Sad to announce I’m withdrawing from the @wplt20 this year, but it’s the right thing for me to be available for the whole England tour of NZ. All the best @RCBTweets and @mandhana_smriti for the coming season.”
Sad to announce I’m withdrawing from the @wplt20 this year, but it’s the right thing for me to be available for the whole England tour of NZ. All the best @RCBTweets and @mandhana_smriti for the coming season 👊🏼 pic.twitter.com/5wW7GEhydp
— Heather Knight (@Heatherknight55) January 27, 2024
Knight was signed by RCB in the inaugural WPL auction at a base price of INR 40 lakh.
Also READ: Women’s Premier League – Complete schedule for WPL 2024; Mumbai Indians to meet Delhi Capitals in the opener
Heather Knight’s replacement for WPL 2024
The Royal Challengers have named South African all-rounder Nadine de Klerk as the replacement player for Knight in the upcoming WPL season, set to commence on February 23.
Nadine, with 46 T20Is under her belt, has showcased her prowess by scoring 419 runs and taking 35 wickets. The 24-year-old has also played in prestigious leagues such as the WBBL and The Hundred. Presently, she is with the Proteas contingent for the limited-overs series in Australia.
RCB acquired Nadine’s services for her base price of INR 30 lakh. Notably, she went unsold during the WPL 2024 auction.