Danielle McGahey is set to become the first transgender cricketer in history to play an official international match. McGahey has been included in Canada’s squad for the qualifying tournament in Los Angeles which will be a pathway to Women’s T20 World Cup 2024 in Bangladesh. The 29-year-old has fulfilled all the eligibility criteria set by the International Cricket Council for the male to female transgender players.
For the unversed, the Australia-born cricketer moved to Canada in February 2020 and socially transitioned from man to woman in November 2020 before starting medically transitioning in May 2021. The news of McGahey being eligible to play cricket comes despite sports like Athletics, cycling, swimming and both codes of rugby banning transgender women from taking part in big competitions.
As far as ICC’s rules are concerned, they clearly state that a transgender woman wishing to play women’s international cricket muast prove that the concentration of testosterone in her serum is less than 5 nmol/L1 for a period of at least 12 months. Not only this, the concerned trans woman must be ready and willing to continue to keep it below the said level as long as she plays. The ICC has also made it mandatory that a male to female trans player must provide a written and signed declaration in the form of satisfactory to the designated medical officer that her gender identity is female.
Speaking about the same Danielle McGahey stated that she has been doing blood tests every month for close to two years now and kept on sending all the information required to the ICC who has dedicated medical officer to look into this matter. “I am absolutely honoured. To be able to represent my community is something I never dreamed I would be able to do. In order to determine [my testosterone levels], I’ve been doing blood tests every month now for over two years. I also have to put in my player profile who I have played against and how many runs I’ve scored.
“A lot of work with my doctor sending my medical information through to the ICC… they have a dedicated medical officer who looks over all of the information provided, and determines whether or not I have provided enough for an expert panel to make a decision. The need to do blood tests every month is probably the biggest challenge because when you are playing cricket you are travelling a lot. It’s very personal in terms of the information you are giving over – all your medical information, history of puberty, any surgeries. There’s a lot in it. But the protocols are there and it has been used as intended,” McGahey told BBC Sport.
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