Two of Wairarapa’s cricket talents have just returned from Australia having taken part in a trans-tasman series of five indoor cricket games. Melissa Hansen and Liam Burling participated for the New Zealand Senior Women’s and Men’s U/22 teams respectively as they took on their strong Australian counterparts.
Both New Zealand sides struggled, losing 5-0 in both series, as the Australian women in particular continued their strong form, not having been defeated for six years. For both Wairarapa players it was a fantastic experience, wearing the silver fern and representing their country at the highest level. Unfortunately for Burling the experience was one that was cut short by injury after a damaged ankle saw him participate in only one fixture.
Hansen had her best game in the fourth match where the NZ team came close to beating the Aussies, only losing by 12 runs. Her bowling of 2 overs 2-7 was excellent, but superseded by her batting contribution where she scored 24 runs, the highest scorer for either team. Hansen was named player of the match for this game.
All games were live streamed online by Cricket Australia, meaning family and friends of both players were able to see them in action. Next goal indoors for both players is a shot at World Cup representation in Dubai in 2018. In the meantime, finishing off the University year will be followed by the outdoor version of the game. October should see both take the field for Wairarapa teams and a push for further Central Districts and higher honours.