Elite sportswomen bid for WBBL opportunity | Big Bash League BBL

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Elite sportswomen bid for WBBL opportunity

26 August 2016
Kristy Rohrer in action on the soccer pitch // Getty Images

Kristy Rohrer in action on the soccer pitch // Getty Images

A former league soccer player and an Olympic medallist are among those signing up for Cricket New South Wales' 'Futurestars' program

Cricket New South Wales' 'Futurestars' initiative is quickly gathering momentum, with the sister of a current cricket star and a former Olympic medallist among those signing up for the opportunity.

The program is designed with the intention of attracting elite sportswomen from other sports to try cricket, with an eye to getting an opportunity to be a part of the Women's Big Bash League. 

The two sportswomen with the most potential at a trial on Saturday, September 3 will be awarded a Sydney Sixers and Sydney Thunder rookie training contract.

Those who show promise will also be invited to join the CNSW elite female academy.

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They must be 16 or over and have played another sport at state level or higher.

Kristy Rohrer, sister of NSW and Thunder batsman Ben, who hit the winning six in last season's BBL final, has played for NSW Sapphires in the national soccer league, as well as for Australian schoolgirls.

"I was just looking for a new challenge, really," Rohrer said of her foray into cricket.

"I've played soccer for about 25 years now and I spoke to Ben said I'd like to play cricket in the summer and then this opportunity came up and it was perfect timing.

"I used to play cricket when I was younger and I played a lot of indoor cricket and I like it. You have to have a lot of technical skill and I like to challenge myself."

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The success of WBBL|01 is another factor that attracted Rohrer to the sport.

"The participation rates, the crowds, it's really positive and it's something I want to be involved in." Her brother believes she has what it takes to transition into cricket.

"I suppose there's always a level of competitiveness when you're playing in any sort of sport so she's already got that," Ben said.

"Technique is something that'll come along, she played a bit of cricket when she was younger so she's got the skill base, so it's just about getting back into it.

"The success of the WBBL last year was fantastic. The standard is getting better and better and trying to introduce women from other sports who obviously have good hand-eye coordination is only going to increase the standard of the women's game and the product going forward."

Rohrer will be up against, among many others, Belinda Barnes, who won bronze as a softballer in Beijing in 2008.

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Barnes, a mother of two and school teacher from Newcastle, signed up after seeing former national softball teammate Kym Turnell promoting the Futurestars initiative on the news recently.

Belinda texted Kim – who she used to room with while playing softball for NSW – to congratulate her, before being prompted by her husband to have a go herself, and she duly signed up online.

Click here to register yourself!

Meg Lanning Steve Smith

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