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News

Leading Australians set for the Hundred after missing first season

Lanning, Healy among those expected to stay in UK after Commonwealth Games

Matt Roller
Matt Roller
21-Feb-2022
Meg Lanning and Alyssa Healy withdrew from the Hundred in 2021  •  CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images

Meg Lanning and Alyssa Healy withdrew from the Hundred in 2021  •  CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images

Australia's leading female players look set to take part in the Hundred in 2022 after pulling out of the competition's first season.
Eleven Australia Women's internationals withdrew from their contracts for the inaugural edition of the Hundred in 2021 after confirmation that a strict two-week quarantine would be required on their return home, eating into preparations for their series against India in September.
While strong contingents of Indian and South African internationals featured in the competition, the majority of the Australia players who withdrew were replaced by compatriots who were not part of the national set-up, meaning the Hundred's star power took a hit.
However, ESPNcricinfo understands that several leading players - including Alyssa Healy, Meg Lanning and Tahlia McGrath, the breakout star of the Ashes - have signed up for the 2022 season. Australia players are significantly more likely to honour their contracts this year after salaries were doubled and most quarantine requirements on returning home were either dropped or eased.
The women's Hundred starts on August 11, four days after the final of the T20 competition at the Commonwealth Games at Edgbaston, and the ECB are hopeful that the world's best players will stay in the country for the following few weeks, with the Hundred running until September 3.
Beth Barrett-Wild, the head of the women's Hundred, has previously outlined the ECB's hopes that the schedule would help attract top overseas talent. "We didn't quite end up with the original line-up of overseas stars we thought we were going to have, especially in the women's competition," she told the Unofficial Partner podcast last year.
"We were due to have Ellyse Perry, Meg Lanning, Beth Mooney and co. Hopefully, we'll see them back next year. I think with the Commonwealth Games happening immediately prior to the Hundred, we're optimistic that we'll get into a good place with that."
With India due to tour for three T20Is and three ODIs from September 10-24, some of their players may also stay in the UK after the Commonwealth Games. Five India players were involved in the first season of the Hundred: Shafali Verma, Jemimah Rodrigues, Deepti Sharma, Smriti Mandhana and Harmanpreet Kaur.
Meanwhile, a handful of England players are expected to leave the teams they represented in the competition's inaugural season, with Welsh Fire - who lacked a marquee England international in 2021 - expected to make at least one major signing. Women's teams are now able to recruit through an open-market system following a retention window that ran until the end of January.
Only three Australian players were involved in the men's Hundred last year - Josh Inglis, D'Arcy Short and Tim David (who has represented Singapore in T20Is) - but their availability is likely to be better for 2022. The men's team's only commitment during the Hundred's window in the most recent version of the Future Tours Programme is a white-ball series against Zimbabwe at the end of August and there is a possibility that some first-choice players will not be required.
Southern Brave have retained David and Marcus Stoinis, who withdrew from his contract last year, while Dan Christian, Ben McDermott and James Pattinson are among the players who have already signed contracts for the Vitality Blast and could stay on for the Hundred if they are signed in March's draft.
The ECB are due to announce which players have been retained by both men's and women's teams on Tuesday.

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98