Western Storm, who played at Gloucestershire CCC this year has awarded Sophie Luff, Fi Morris, Dani Gibson, Georgia Hennessy, Nat Wraith and Alex Griffiths with full-time domestic contracts.
The announcement comes after the eight regions awarded a further 16 contracts to add to the 25 already given in June. This means that 41 females across England and Wales have signed onto full-time contracts.
Alex Griffiths, an 18-year-old all-rounder for Western Storm spoke exclusively to Park Life Sport and said she is “absolutely over the moon with it. You can’t really put the excitement into words to be honest.”
You will be able to watch Griffiths and several other Western Storm players next year in the ECB’s new franchise; The Hundred, where a number of the women will play in Welsh Fire, a team made up from Cricket Wales, Gloucestershire and Somerset.
On The Hundred, the all-rounder said: “I think The Hundred will be a lot more intense than Western Storm.
“Obviously just the format, that’s going to be a lot of work and it’s going to be quick. I think it will be a good environment and a good buzz though especially with the first year and it’s going to be all in Cardiff so it’s not going to be too bad, less on the travelling.”
This year, Western Storm played all their games at Gloucestershire CCC behind closed doors. Griffiths said: “It was weird but not really, I was probably a bit more comfortable playing in front of less people because there’s less pressure but with less people.
“It takes you back to when you’re just in a field, with just your team and your coaches. It was nice but it’s always nice to have a crowd in because you get a bit of a buzz off that but yeah, it took me back to like club and county cricket really which was nice but hopefully we’ll start getting them back in soon.
“I think it will be nice to get them back in, especially for The Hundred as that’s why it wasn’t on this year, but when we’re all there, it’s going to be a good day for everyone, I think.”