I was delighted but unsurprised to see the theme for the Woman’s Hour Power List 2023 was 'women in sport' given its momentum (see my initial post here).
I was fortunate enough to attend the live show that took place in the lead up to the Easter break at BBC Radio Theatre, where the list of 30 amazing women was announced.
Sitting amongst some of the nominees and hearing their contributions in this space was truly humbling. For example:
- we heard from Beth Barrett-Wild, the new Director of the Women's Hundred competition, a relatively new 100-ball cricket tournament involving both male and female teams from across England and Wales. Beth revealed that 45% of its audience is new to cricket. She mentioned how her son and daughter both see the tournament as something they can aspire to win a place in, which resonated with me as mother of a boy and girl too. The competition giving equal weight to the men's and women's competition; with matches on the same day; matches at the same venue and equal prize money. Clearly this new tournament is pushing for gender balance to be part of the fabric of the competition - a similar concept to Extreme E, the world's first gender equal motor racing series.
- Sue Anstiss MBE and CEO of Fearless Women argued that women's sport doesn't need to replicate men's and we are seeing different crowds which invites different and compelling sponsorship opportunities.
- The event concluded with captain of the Euro’s-winning Lionesses, Leah Williamson OBE, being named as number 1 on the list. We heard her talk about the importance of using her platform; including her petitioning the government to give young girls the opportunity to play football.
We started our own DLA Piper Women In Sport initiative back in 2021, to talk about topical issues and to meet like minded individuals with a passion for women’s sport and women working in sport. At that time, there were less success stories and certainly less visibility for women’s sport.
With awards such as these, The FIFA Women’s World Cup kicking off in July and The Hundred coming up in August, to name just two events of many, the opportunities to keep the conversation going are set to continue, roll on summer 2023.