New Delhi: The idea of having a full-fledged women's IPL is in a "progression stage" and the World Cup title could have actually hastened that proposal into a reality sooner than later, says former captain Anjum Chopra.
Under the leadership of Harmanpreet Kaur, the Indian team sailed into the final of the last women's T20 World Cup, but was thrashed by home favourites and defending champions Australia when it mattered the most.
Chopra, one of the country's most decorated women cricketers, said a World Cup title triumph would have brought about a generational shift to the women's game in cricket-mad India.
"Women's IPL is in the progression stages. From one game at the start we had four last year in the Women's T20 Challenge, and this time it was supposed to be seven. It has progressed," Chopra told PTI.
"If the women's team had won the World Cup this year, the number of matches would have been more. There is a big difference between winners and runners up."
Chopra had a successful career spanning over 17 years during which she represented India in six World Cups while becoming the first woman cricketer to appear in 100 One-day Internationals.
She added, "A victory (in final of last T20 World Cup) would have been a complete generational shift in a much more progressional manner."
Referring to the rapid strides the women's game has made the world over, she praised the International Cricket Council (ICC) for "consciously building it up".
"ICC has bifurcated viewership numbers also very well for Indian audience."
The icing on the cake was a near-packed Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) for the World Cup final between India and Australia, and that was not lost on Chopra, who is now a respected analyst and sportscaster.
Asked about the chatter around pay disparity in Indian cricket, her simple message was win more to earn more.
"There is already pay parity in Australia. Because both teams have won the World Cups more than any other nations.
"If you start winning, then I am sure things will be different. It's also about how much you are able to generate as a team.
"I would say sky is the limit for them."...