Cricket Australia (CA) today confirmed that eight teams will compete in the inaugural Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL), which will be launched in the 2015-16 season.

The teams will be aligned with the existing eight teams competing in the KFC T20 Big Bash League (BBL), with the decision endorsed by the CA Board on Friday.

Speaking about the competition CA CEO James Sutherland said: “We see T20 as the premium format of the women’s game and the WBBL is an exciting concept that will increase the promotion and exposure of women’s cricket.

“We want cricket to be the number one sport for girls and women in Australia and we believe that the WBBL can assist this goal by creating an inspiring visible pathway for the next generation of players, fans and volunteers.

“Aligning the WBBL brands with the BBL brands will help cricket to appeal to a broader audience and gain greater exposure.

“Our existing female domestic competitions are arguably the strongest in the world, with the continued success of the top-ranked women’s team, the Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars, a testament to that.

“The WBBL will build on this foundation and will create a clear participation pathway for girls and their families, who are already engaged with cricket through the BBL.

“Players such as Meg Lanning, Alex Blackwell, Ellyse Perry and Alyssa Healy continue to be exceptional ambassadors for Australian Cricket, both on and off the field. They invest a huge amount of time and energy into their cricket and they each play an important role in promoting cricket as sport for all Australians. With the introduction of a WBBL, we want young girls to be able to dream about growing up and following in their footsteps.”

The format of the competition is still being discussed, with consideration being given to the best way to ensure an evenly balanced and high quality competition that optimises the competitiveness of all teams. The operational component of the competition will be managed by State Associations, as was the case with the previous WT20 competition.

The format of the Women’s National Cricket League (WNCL) is still under consideration.