PERFECT PITCH

2016-17 Shooting Stars squad selected

Three new faces have been added to a development squad of Australia’s best emerging female players who will attend a camp at the Bupa National Cricket Centre next month. The 14-player Commonwealth Bank Shooting Stars development squad has been selected by the Women’s National Selection Panel (WNSP), and features some of the Australia’s brightest young talent who impressed during the rebel Women’s Big Bash League and Women’s National Cricket League last summer.

aus-cricThe squad includes 11 players who were part of the Shooting Stars tour of Sri Lanka in April, joined by NSW leg-spinner Maisy Gibson, Tasmanian fast bowler Erin Lawler and South Australian seamer Samantha Betts.They will attend the camp at the Bupa National Cricket Centre from 26-30 September, where they will play a series of matches against a NSW Academy side.

The squad includes rising Indigenous talent Ashleigh Gardner, who starred in Sri Lanka earlier this year, scoring the only century of the tour – a match-winning 117 against the hosts. The 19-year-old from NSW also captained Australia’s national Indigenous women’s team on their tour of India in May. Commenting on the 14-player squad, Women’s National Selector Shawn Flegler said:

“We’ve identified these players as having the potential to play for Australia in the future, after they impressed at different stages last summer and on the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year. “We’re keen to see the continued development of these promising and exciting players. “Ash Gardner is one to watch and she showed her potential in Sri Lanka and India, following good performances at domestic level last summer.

“Sophie Molineux carried her excellent form from the WBBL and the U18s championships to Sri Lanka, where she was a stand out with both bat and ball. “Maisy Gibson is one of three exciting additions to the squad, having helped the Sydney Thunder to the WBBL title last summer.

“The September camp is a great opportunity for players to hone their skills ahead of the domestic season and push their cases for international selection.”  A Shooting Stars squad will again tour Sri Lanka in March 2017.

Shooting Stars Squad 2016-17:

Player State Age
Megan Banting WA 20
Samantha Betts SA 20
Hayleigh Brennan VIC 17
Ash Gardner NSW 19
Maisy Gibson NSW 19
Heather Graham WA 19
Nicola Hancock ACT 20
Erin Lawler TAS 19
Tahlia McGrath SA 20
Sophie Molineux VIC 18
Alex Price SA 20
Lauren Smith NSW 19
Belinda Vakarewa NSW 18
Amanda Jade Wellington SA 18