WPL 2024: Mini team guides

DREW MURPHY and MAX METCALFE dive into all five franchises ahead of the 2024 Women's Premier League


Delhi Capitals

Captain: Meg Lanning

Coach: Jonathan Batty


Allrounder Marizanne Kapp is in fine form, recently posting a career-best T20I score of 75 (48) against world champions Australia. A powerful batter and economical medium pacer, she scored 177 runs at a strike rate above 120 and took nine wickets with an economy of 5.72 in last year's tournament.

Meg Lanning will be determined to hold onto the title of leading run-scorer after winning the orange cap with 345 runs at 49.28 in 2023. With 3,405 T20I runs and five T20 World Cups to her name, she is no stranger to success and will be eager to go one step further after losing in the final last year.

Explosive batter Shafali Verma gives Delhi Capitals a powerful start at the top of the order. Verma boasted the highest strike rate (185.29) in the competition last year, including scoring a fifty in just nineteen balls.

One to watch

Young Titas Sadhu took 4 for 17 against Australia in a T20I in January, showing Delhi Capitals she could be the bowler to back up their vast batting strengths. The player of the match in the Under-19 Women's T20 World Cup final, Sadhu showed she can perform at the biggest stage.

Why they'll win the WPL

Falling at the final hurdle in 2023, the Capitals will be determined to get over the line this time and with the big hitters at their disposal, they'll be tough to stop. With the leadership experience of Lanning and a similar squad to last year, they have all the tools to get the job done this time around.

Why they won't win the WPL

Delhi Capitals need their bowling unit to step up. Last year, only Shikha Pandey made it to 10 wickets, whereas champions Mumbai Indians had five players with 10-plus wickets. Sadhu could be the one to do it but it's a big ask for the 19-year-old.

Squad: Alice Capsey, Arundhati Reddy, Jemimah Rodrigues, Jess Jonassen, Laura Harris, Marizanne Kapp, Meg Lanning, Minnu Mani, Poonam Yadav, Radha Yadav, Shafali Verma, Shikha Pandey, Sneha Deepthi, Taniya Bhatia, Titas Sadhu, Annabel Sutherland, Aparna Mondal, Ashwani Kumari

Possible XI: Meg Lanning, Shafali Verma, Alice Capsey, Jemimah Rodrigues, Marizanne Kapp, Jess Jonassen, Shikha Pandey, Taniya Bhatia, Minnu Mani, Titas Sadhu, Radha Yadav


Meg Lanning won the orange cap in 2023 and captains Delhi Capitals [Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images]

Gujarat Giants

Captain: Beth Mooney

Coach: Rachael Haynes


Laura Wolvaardt notched up two half-centuries in just four innings in the competition last year. If afforded a full complement of matches, she will be a big player for the Giants this year.

Australian duo Ash Gardner and Beth Mooney were selected along with Wolvaardt in the Women's T20I team of the year. The former, a spin-bowling allrounder, boasts a strike rate above 125 across her T20 career and has taken over 150 wickets. Wicketkeeper Mooney, meanwhile, is a big-hitting top-order batter and recently topped the run-scoring charts in the WBBL, with 557 runs at a strike rate above 140.

Dayalan Hemalatha was the pick of Gujarat Giants' home players last year, with her 151 runs coming at a strike rate of 157.29. The 29-year-old made 24 appearances for India between 2018 and 2022.

One to watch

Securing the services of 20-year-old Phoebe Litchfield was something of a coup for the Giants. Having impressed on Australia's recent multi-format tour of India (she was the leading run-scorer in the ODI leg), conditions will likely play to her strengths and she has a real chance of leaving a lasting impression on the competition.

Her flexibility was one of her main draws according to Mithali Raj, the Giants' mentor, and fresh from being crowned ICC emerging women's cricketer of the year, Litchfield will take some stopping.

Why they'll win the WPL

On paper, they have a squad brimming with talent, with Mooney, Gardner, and Wolvaardt all players who would walk into any other XI. They've shored up their batting with the addition of Litchfield and it's important to remember that Mooney only featured once last year due to injury, which will have contributed to their poor form.

Why they won't win the WPL

This is a new-look Giants, who released half of their squad after finishing bottom last year. Sophia Dunkley, who was striking above 170, and Kim Garth, who picked up 11 wickets, are the two big-name departures and the latter's wickets in particular don't appear to have been replaced - can Lea Tahuhu (a late replacement for Lauren Cheatle) displace one of the other overseas names? As for their Indian contingent, unlike their rivals, no big names leap out as reliable match-winners.

Squad: Ash Gardner, Beth Mooney, Dayalan Hemalatha, Harleen Deol, Laura Wolvaardt, Shabnam Shakil, Sneh Rana, Tanuja Kanwar, Phoebe Litchfield, Meghna Singh, Trisha Poojitha, Kashvee Gautam (withdrawn), Priya Mishra, Lauren Cheatle (withdrawn, replaced by Lea Tahuhu), Kathryn Bryce, Mannat Kashyap, Veda Krishnamurthy, Tarannum Pathan, Sayali Sathgare

Possible XI: Beth Mooney, Phoebe Litchfield, Laura Wolvaardt, Harleen Deol, Ash Gardner, Dayalan Hemalatha, Kathryn Bryce, Sneh Rana, Meghna Singh, Tanuja Kanwar, Shabnam Shakil


Beth Mooney only featured once for Gujarat Giants in 2023 due to injury [Idranil Mukherjee/Getty Images]

Mumbai Indians

Captain: Harmanpreet Kaur

Coach: Charlotte Edwards


Nat Sciver-Brunt was one of the many stand out performers for Mumbai Indians in last year's tournament. She smashed 332 runs at a strike rate of 140.08, finishing second for most runs scored, and saw her side home in four chases. She bowled well too, taking 10 wickets, and was crowned player of the final.

Captain Harmanpreet Kaur will be looking to lead her side to back-to-back titles. Kaur led from the front last year, scoring 281 runs at 50.33 at the top of the order and hitting three fifties in her first four innings.

Last year's MVP Hayley Matthews was among the top five run-scorers and topped the wicket-taking charts, scoring 271 runs, with a high score of 77 not out, and taking 16 wickets - a dynamic presence.

Talented 21-year-old Issy Wong created history when she took the tournament's first hat-trick (in the Eliminator against UP Warriorz). She finished one wicket shy of teammate Matthews, with 15, and maintained an economy of 6.46. She'll be hungry for success with one eye on the upcoming T20 World Cup.

One to watch

It's hard to single one player out but the addition of South African fast bowler Shabnim Ismail is a shrewd one. Ismail was released by UP Warriorz after only making three appearances last year, but the 35-year-old is in fine form - she took 13 wickets with an economy of 6.23 in 14 matches for the Hobart Hurricanes in WBBL09. With 113 T20I caps and 242 wickets across her T20 career, she brings bags of experience to an already stacked roster.

Why they'll win the WPL

When it was revealed that England's players faced a choice between playing in the WPL or their upcoming tour of New Zealand, the thought of losing Sciver-Brunt from the team would have caused nightmares. But the allrounder, the ICC women's cricketer of the year for the past two years, will be back to help Mumbai defend their title.

Ismail's arrival provides an additional bowling option while the fact her hard-hitting compatriot Chloe Tryon was surplus to requirements during last year's title charge demonstrates just how strong this squad is. It will be difficult for another team to stop them.

Why they won’t win the WPL

They began last year's tournament looking as though they lacked bowling depth. Mumbai Indians have a lot of allrounders and while they've brought in Ismail to stregthen the bowling options, the question is which overseas player do they sacrifice to get her in the XI? The top-heavy nature of their lineup is a concern but as the old saying goes, if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

Squad: Amanjot Kaur, Amelia Kerr, Chloe Tryon, Harmanpreet Kaur, Hayley Matthews, Humaira Kazi, Issy Wong, Jintimani Kalita, Nat Sciver-Brunt, Pooja Vastrakar, Priyanka Bala, Saika Ishaque, Yastika Bhatia, Shabnim Ismail, S Sajana, Amandeep Kaur, Fatima Jaffer, Keerthana Balakrishnan

Possible XI: Hayley Matthews, Yastika Bhatia, Nat Sciver-Brunt, Harmanpreet Kaur, Amelia Kerr, Pooja Vastrakar, Amanjot Kaur, Issy Wong, Humaira Kazi, Jintimani Kalita, Saika Ishaque


RCB allrounder Ellyse Perry [Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images]

Royal Challengers Bangalore

Captain: Smriti Mandhana

Coach: Luke Williams


Sophie Devine posted the highest individual knock last year, with a destructive 99 off 35 balls. A powerful top-order batter (and handy bowling option), she hit the joint-most sixes and had a strike rate of 172.72.

Australian allrounder Ellyse Perry will be looking to improve on last year's numbers which were, by her standards, a bit below par - she scored 253 runs and took four wickets. A highly experienced operator, she has scored over 7,000 runs and taken over 250 wickets across her T20 career.

Devine's opening partner Smriti Mandhana struggled last year, only scoring 149 runs. However, the 27-year-old was sixth in scoring in last year's Hundred and found form in India's T20I series against Australia at the start of the year.

One to watch

Georgia Wareham only played two matches for Gujarat Giants last year and was released prior to the 2024 auction where she was bought by RCB for £40,000. The leg-spinner adds useful depth to the bowling attack - she has 51 wickets in 52 T20Is - and can cause chaos with the bat on her day. Against West Indies last October, for example, she thrashed 32 runs off 13 deliveries.

Why they'll win the WPL

Both Devine and Perry head into the tournament in fine form after racking up runs at the WBBL. Perry finished with 496 runs and averaged 45.09 while Devine scored 489 runs, including a knock 106. With the firepower of Devine, Perry, and Mandhana alongside experienced bowlers like Kate Cross and Wareham, RCB can thrive.

Why they won't win the WPL

Heather Knight's decision to withdraw from the WPL to focus on England's tour of New Zealand leaves a hole in the RCB's middle order. Players like Kanika Ahuja and Richa Ghosh will have to step up in her absence, but the pair lack the England skipper's experience.

Squad: Asha Shobana, Disha Kasat, Ellyse Perry, Heather Knight (withdrawn), Indrani Roy, Kanika Ahuja (withdrawn), Renuka Singh, Richa Ghosh, Shreyanka Patil, Smriti Mandhana, Sophie Devine, Georgia Wareham, Kate Cross, Ekta Bisht, Shubha Satheesh, S Meghana, Simran Bahadur, Sophie Molineux, Shradda Pokharkar

Possible XI: Smriti Mandhana, Sophie Devine, Ellyse Perry, Kanika Ahuja, Richa Ghosh, Shreyanka Patil, Georgia Wareham, Disha Kasat, Kate Cross, Sobhana Asha, Renuka Singh


Sophie Ecclestone and Alyssa Healy will once again represent UP Warriorz [Pankaj Nangia/Getty Images]

UP Warriorz

Captain: Alyssa Healy

Coach: Jon Lewis


Grace Harris only played six games last year but amassed 230 runs at 57.50 while striking at 165.46. In the WBBL, the powerful Australian scored 501 runs for Brisbane Heat, topping the leaderboard for most sixes and smacking 136 not out off 59 runs at the top of the order. Should she bat higher up the order for the Warriorz?

Danni Wyatt revealed how disappointed she was not to be included in WPL's inaugural season and will be hungry to get off to a good start. The England international, who has over 2,500 T20I runs, is a quick-scoring opening batter and adds yet more firepower to the Warriorz squad.

Last year's joint-leading wicket-taker Sophie Ecclestone is the standout bowler - the left-arm spinner has 109 T20I wickets at 15.03 - and can also crunch boundaries with the bat.

And then of course, there's Deepti Sharma. The allrounder underwhelmed with the bat last year, scoring just 90 runs, and also proved expensive with the ball - her nine wickets came with an economy of 8.87. However, at her best, she's an economical wicket-taking threat.

One to watch

Last year, 17-year-old Parshavi Chopra took three wickets in four games, two of which were Gardner and Matthews. The young leg-spinner will be looking for a bigger role to help the Warriorz improve on last year's third-place finish.

Why they'll win the WPL

The Warriorz already had an immensely talented batting line-up but have added Wyatt and Sri Lanka skipper Chamari Athapaththu (a late replacement for Lauren Bell) to the squad. The latter was recently the WBBL's second-highest scorer and is known for not only her excellent batting, but also her spin bowling. The array of batting options together with the skillfulness of Ecclestone should prove a recipe for success.

Why they won't win the WPL

The news that Bell was withdrawing from the tournament to focus on England's tour of New Zealand tour meant the Warriorz lost a pivotal player. Couple this with Ismail's departure and suddenly the pace attack looks rather lean on quality and experience. There'll be a lot of pressure on Ecclestone and Rajeshwari Gayakwad to perform.

However, perhaps of greater concern is which overseas players they choose to leave out of the XI. Alyssa Healy, Tahlia McGrath, Harris and Ecclestone all impressed last year but leaving Wyatt or Athapaththu running the drinks would be a bold call.

Squad: Alyssa Healy, Kiran Navgire, Danni Wyatt, Chamari Athapaththu, Parshavi Chopra, Grace Harris, Tahlia McGrath, Shweta Sehrawat, Deepti Sharma, Anjali Sarvani, Sophie Ecclestone, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Poonam Khemnar, Gouher Sultana, Saima Thakor, Dinesh Vrinda, Laxmi Yadav, Soppadhandi Yashasri

Possible XI: Alyssa Healy, Shweta Sehrawat, Chamari Athapaththu, Grace Harris, Kiran Navgire, Deepti Sharma, Sophie Ecclestone, Anjali Sarvani, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Parshavi Chopra, Soppadhandi Yashasri

Related Topics

WPL | Women's Cricket | UP Warriorz | Royal Challengers Bangalore | News | Mumbai Indians | Gujarat Giants | Delhi Capitals |





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