Ahmedabad, Nov 21 (PTI) In a major policy decision, the ICC on Tuesday barred cricketers, who have been through any form of male puberty, from competing in international women’s game regardless of whether or not they have undergone surgery or gender reassignment treatment.
The ICC said it was taking the decision to protect the integrity of international women’s game and the safety of players.
In a statement, the ICC said, “The ICC Board approved new gender eligibility regulations for the international game following a nine-month consultation process with the sport’s stakeholders.
“The new policy is based on the following principles (in order of priority), protection of the integrity of the women’s game, safety, fairness and inclusion, and this means any Male to Female participants who have been through any form of male puberty will not be eligible to participate in the international women’s game regardless of any surgery or gender reassignment treatment they may have undertaken.”
Gender reassignment and treatment have been a hotly-debated topic in world athletics for years.
The ICC, while firming up rules for gender eligibility for international women’s cricket, left the issue at the domestic level in the hands of the member boards.
“The review, which was led by the ICC Medical Advisory Committee chaired by Dr Peter Harcourt, relates solely to gender eligibility for international women’s cricket, whilst gender eligibility at domestic level is a matter for each individual Member Board, which may be impacted by local legislation. The regulations will be reviewed within two years,” said the ICC.
ICC Chief Executive Geoff Allardice said the world governing body had arrived at the decision following “extensive consultations”.
“The changes to the gender eligibility regulations resulted from an extensive consultation process and is founded in science and aligned with the core principles developed during the review.
“Inclusivity is incredibly important to us as a sport, but our priority was to protect the integrity of the international women’s game and the safety of players,” said Allardice.
Meanwhile, the Chief Executives’ Committee (CEC) endorsed a plan to accelerate the development of women match officials, which includes equal match-day pay for ICC umpires across men’s and women’s cricket, and ensuring there is one neutral umpire in every ICC Women’s Championship series from January next year.