I can’t remember a time where sport, in particular cricket, hasn’t been a part of my life.
My cricket memories, achievements, passions and highlights come from all phases of that journey and share equal standing in my reflections. It’s the varying connections I’ve made with people & places through sport, not the end results, that have pride of place and in a lot of way define me today. Backyard cricket is where it all started and provides me with the purest and freest memories of playing. Hot summer days in my grandparents backyard in Rutherglen, Victoria with all the quirky traditions and hard fought competition that I think gave me the perfect foundation to understand and love the spirit of game.
Days on days of bowling in the baking sun mimicking the angled run up of Malcolm Marshall, the delivery stride of Holding and the appeal of Lillie. The back drop was the purple flowered 6ft vine screen protecting the veggie patch as the automatic caught behind wall, the upturned bin the stumps and clothes line the umpire. Without fail every battle or match was Australia v West Indies.
When I finally got a turn to bat my game plan was simple. A good cover drive to hit the huge prickly bush allowing for continuous running until the ball was retrieved, scratches and blood included. No hooking as it would mean retrieving the ball from Nan’s chook shed and if she caught you, you were out for the rest of the day!
From the unscripted and ever changing rules to suit the backyard or playground to the place where I spent most of my cricket – clubland.
It’s here where you find life long teammate’s and friends, you learn to hone your skills and really understand no matter what grade you play the delights of a team mates first run or wicket can be as exhilarating as another’s first ton or hatrick.
Club cricket for me has given me a sense of belonging and the opportunity to play, coach, develop and continue some of the best traditions of the game but to also create some new ones.
And finally the place where you experience the full range of extreme emotions, playing for your country. From receiving one of the most iconic sporting items in Australia, a baggygreen, and wearing it while scoring a century on debut, to being dropped, numerous times and faltering when it mattered most for the team.
I played in and for one of the greatest Australian cricket teams with some of our greatest players. The experiences and discussions in and around winning two World Cups and being part of two successful Ashes campaigns has provided me with a thirst to continue these discussions with the next generation and any lover of the game.
Away from cricket I’m a Melbourne girl at heart and it will always be home no matter where I am. Having studied a Bachelor of Applied Science in Human Movement and then a Graduate Diploma in secondary education I took myself off for 6 winters in a row coaching, developing and promoting cricket overseas. Three stints in South Africa and 3 playing and working for Surrey Country Cricket allowed me to coach from grassroots to elite, from townships to The Oval.
And today my passion for providing females with the opportunities and encouragement to achieve their sporting goals (recreational to Olympics) has me working with some of Australia’s most talented elite athletes and with passionate groups wanting to make sure that sport and recreation is a part of everyone’s day to day lives.
I’m excited about what the next chapter is about to bring…..
- Talent Manager at TLA-ESP
- Freelance Cricket Commentator and Presenter
- Independent Board Member at Bowls Australia
- Women in Sport and Recreation Taskforce member (Victoria)
- Level 3 Cricket Coach – Satellite coach for Tasmania Roar
- Cricket Victoria Game Development Manager
- Secondary and primary school teacher
- Board Member Red Dust Role Models