Worcestershire Women’s Rapids vice-captain Chloe Hill is looking forward to playing two matches at Blackfinch New Road in the next fortnight.
The Women’s Rapids meet Notts Outlaws tomorrow (10.15am start) ahead of the Vitality Blast clash between Worcestershire Rapids and Lancashire Lightning (2.30pm) as part of a Family Fun Day at the ground.
Then on Sunday, August 12 the Women’s Rapids will tackle Warwickshire Women at New Road – again starting at 10.15am before the Worcestershire Rapids face Notts Outlaws in another Vitality Blast encounter.
Both matches will provide useful experience of playing at the County’s headquarters for the Women ahead of their crucial ECB One-Day Cup promotion play-off against Cornwall, which also takes place at Blackfinch New Road on Bank Holiday Monday, August 27.
Hill, who is also the Women’s Rapids wicket-keeper, says the team can’t wait to take to the big stage.
She said: “Playing at New Road is always a great experience and we’d love it to happen more often. For the first time this year we have three games at New Road, which is a big step forward for us, including our big promotion game in the 50 over format.
“Hopefully, Rapids supporters will come early to watch us play. The women’s game has come on massively in the past few years, nationally and in Worcestershire, and it’s gaining more and more supporters all the time.
“In particular we’re seeing a lot of families, including young girls and boys watching women’s cricket.
“The quality and intensity of the game is good, and I think if we show the fans what we can do in these two T20s then hopefully we can encourage people to come and support us in the play-off match.”
Hill says the increased support from the County, and the extra opportunities to play at “HQ”, are very much appreciated by the players.
She said: “We’re used to playing our fixtures at Kidderminster, which has been a great venue for us. We know the pitch there and it feels very much like home.
“These two T20 games will hopefully help us get a proper feel for New Road and get to understand the pitch and the outfield in the same way. With the play-off in mind, it’s invaluable experience.
“There is still a long way to go with the support for women’s cricket generally, but it’s really good to see Worcestershire moving in the right direction.”
The Women’s Rapids have had mixed fortunes on the field so far this season. Their promotion push in the One-Day Cup was followed by a tough campaign in their first season in Division One of the Vitality T20 Cup, which ultimately saw them relegated.
However, Hill feels the team can show more of its potential against Notts on Sunday, without the pressure of playing for points.
She added: “With nothing at stake in these games it does mean we can play with more freedom.
“But even though there may not be that competitive edge there’s no doubt we want to win and put on a good show. We want to play our own game, enjoy it and hopefully provide some entertainment.”