England's Kate Cross calls for five-day Test matches in women's game

England’s Kate Cross calls for five-day Test matches to be introduced to the women’s game as she and her team gear up for their four-day Ashes Test against Australia in Canberra

  • England are set to play Australia in a one-off Test as part of the Ashes this week
  • Kate Cross has called for women’s Test matches to be extended to five days 
  • Katherine Brunt wants changes to be made to the longer format of the game 

England go into an Ashes Test they cannot afford to lose with calls growing for the introduction of a fifth day to encourage more results in women’s red-ball cricket.

England are 4-2 down in the multi-format series and defeat in the four-day Test in Canberra would condemn the women to follow England’s men in conceding the Ashes.

The last four women’s Tests have all ended in draws and England have not won a red-ball match since their victory at the WACA in 2013-14, the last time they lifted the Ashes.

England’s Kate Cross has called for five-day Test matches to be introduced in women’s cricket

Cross is gearing up to play for England against Australia in their Ashes Test in Canberra

And the chances of them forcing the positive result in four days that would give them a 6-4 lead ahead of three one-day internationals that conclude the Ashes are weakened further by an uncertain weather forecast in the Australian capital.

But England fast bowler Kate Cross, who returns to the side after missing the three Twenty20 matches, echoed England captain Heather Knight’s view that the time has come for women’s Tests to replicate men’s.

‘I think historically our Tests have been four days to fit around tour schedules and apparently because women weren’t fit enough for five days,’ said Cross, who made her Test debut in that Perth victory eight years ago. 

Cross is set to return to the England side after missing the three Twenty20 matches

‘But I think we’re ready. If you play five days you will get more results in women’s Test matches, it’s as simple as that’

‘The good thing is we know the last time we had a result in a Test was in Australia and the quicker pitches here do usually produce results. But we can dine out on the 2014 game as much as we like. 

‘This is a different pitch and different sets of players but I like to think my game has developed a lot since then.’

Earlier this week, England bowler Katherine Brunt said she’s ‘sick to death’ of the lack of progress in women’s Test cricket.

‘I love it (Test cricket), I just wish they’d tinker with it,’ Brunt told said. ‘I’m absolutely sick to death of us not evolving cricket the way it should do as a sport.

Katherine Brunt is annoyed by the lack of progress in women’s Test cricket in recent years

‘We need to get on with making things more exciting, more challenging. The totals have gone up and up and the wickets have gone down and down.

Brunt added: ‘We shouldn’t be playing on the same length pitches as men, that should not be happening. We should not be playing off 22 yards, it’s wrong, that’s one.

‘Two, we shouldn’t be bowling in Test matches with Kookaburra balls, that’s wrong. The fact that none of us have ever bowled with a Dukes ball is wrong.

‘If you want to make us play over four days then give us a better pitch to bowl on and give us a Dukes ball to make it happen, otherwise don’t put on it on TV because honestly, it bores me even so I don’t know how anyone else can watch it.’ 

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