Women’s IPL a ‘life changer’: Jonassen

Joel Gould |

Jess Jonassen is not sitting on the fence with her enthusiasm for the new IPL women’s competition.
Jess Jonassen is not sitting on the fence with her enthusiasm for the new IPL women’s competition.

Jess Jonassen has achieved everything women’s cricket has to offer, and says 2023 can be a life-changing year for herself and female participants around the world.

The Australian allrounder has been watching with interest the build-up to the inaugural Women’s IPL in India, where five or six teams are expected to contest a new tournament in March after the completion of the Women’s Twenty20 World Cup in South Africa.

A salary cap per team of $6 million has been mooted, more than 15 times the figure in the Women’s Big Bash League.

The 30-year-old Jonassen, who has recovered from a hamstring injury and is available to return to national duty for the first ODI against Pakistan at Brisbane’s Allan Border Field on Monday, said women’s cricket was about to take a giant leap forward.

“The introduction of the Women’s IPL is going to change the landscape of women’s cricket globally forever,” she said.

“If the Women’s IPL can kick off anywhere near what the men’s IPL is then it is going to change a lot of female cricketers’ lives.

“It puts the game on the map even more. There is a genuine pathway domestically starting to shine through. 

“If girls can continue to see where cricket can take them, the levels it can take them and the experiences they can gain out of that … then I am all for it.”

Jonassen was emphatic when asked if she was putting her hand up to join one of the Indian franchises, which are expected to each be able to field five foreign players.

“Without a doubt,” she said. “To potentially be part of the first one would be incredibly special so I will put my hat in the ring.”

Jonassen has been named in the team to contest the T20 World Cup next month, having already been part of four winning tournaments for Australia, playing in three finals. 

In 2022 she took 3-57 in the ODI World Cup final win over England before going on to collect a gold medal at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham.

The Queensland Fire and Brisbane Heat skipper is raring to go after the hamstring injury she sustained playing T20 for Australia in India last month. 

She came through an unrestricted fielding session in Brisbane on Tuesday and is ready to take her place in the side to play Pakistan in three ODIs and three T20 internationals.

“I am looking forward to playing some 50-over cricket again,” she said.