Melbourne Renegades star Jess Duffin has a baby on the way. Picture: Hamish Blair/AAP
Melbourne Renegades star Jess Duffin has a baby on the way. Picture: Hamish Blair/AAP

Pregnant Duffin to miss women's T20 Cup

JESS Duffin will miss the women's Twenty20 World Cup, having revealed she is pregnant.

Duffin announced on Tuesday that she and her husband Chris are expecting their first child - a daughter - in July.

She has told Cricket Australia she will be unavailable for the World Cup.

One of the brightest stars of this summer's Women's Big Bash League, Duffin was named captain of Cricket Australia's team of the tournament.

She hit 544 runs at an average of 68 for the Melbourne Renegades, making her a serious chance to break back into the Australian side for the first time since stepping away in 2015.

However, she knocked back an opportunity to play for Australia A in December and now won't play the home World Cup when it begins in February.

The announcement also means she will sit out the AFLW season for North Melbourne, in turn avoiding a decision between which sport to prioritise.

"2019 was full of exciting adventures and plenty of wonderful memories," Duffin posted on social media.

"July 2020 is going to be even more special, when our very own baby girl is due."

It means Duffin will become the first elite women's player to be covered by Cricket Australia's new player parental leave policy announced in October.

Under the scheme, which was created in partnership with the players' association, Duffin will be able to go into a non-playing role in cricket until she gives birth.

She will also be eligible for 12 months of paid parental leave and has a guaranteed contract next summer.

The 30-year-old will be able to return to cricket at any point she feels comfortable.