The U18 National Championships will be played across Victoria, with matches in Bendigo and Ballarat, which includes a mix of T20 and One Day fixtures from 14 – 24 January 2019.

The NT will enter an under-18 female team in the Championships for the first time in its history. With the popularity of the WBBL and the strategy to grow cricket for girls across Australia, the NT under-18 cohort has the opportunity to meet and play against other emerging cricketers across Australia. 

In the past three years, female cricketers in the NT have engaged in the representative pathway through playing in the National Indigenous Cricket Championships or via the combined NT women’s and girls’ team in the Australian Country Cricket Championships.  The NT’s inclusion at the U18 National Underage Championships will allow our young women to develop and match themselves against the best in the country in their age group.

The NT Under 18 team is a joint venture with Queensland Cricket which will supply some players from far north Queensland, who share a similar climate to the NT top end and play their cricket in opposing seasons to the rest of Australia.  Queensland Cricket has selected six players to join the NT squad of eight players for the Championships which will be played in Victoria. 

NT Coaching and Talent Specialist, Adam Trunks said:

“This is a fantastic opportunity for our young female cricketers and coaches who have the chance to play against other U18 players from across the country.  The experience will strengthen the NT pathway and provide an excellent development opportunity for our players who aren’t exposed to the length or breadth of competition available in other states.

NT Cricket CEO Joel Morrison sees this as a significant milestone for female cricket in the NT.  Morrison said:

"Entering an NT team in the U18 female championships for the first time is a significant milestone for cricket in the north. We have worked really hard to develop a pathway for girls to complement the opportunities available for boys, with this being a clear example of our commitment to cricket becoming the leading sport for women and girls.

“With a clearer pathway and more opportunities than ever before, our hope is that more women and girls are inspired to pick up a bat and ball for the first time and get involved in our great game.”

 

Player background

The NT players have some good experience under their belts, with several players already well seasoned in terms of representative cricket. 

Rachel Hartung (Works CC) has played her Junior cricket in the Alice Springs competition and debuted for the NT in the inaugural Country Championships in 2016 and played again in 2017.  She returns to the U18 team for 2019 and will look to have an impact. 

Matisse and Monet Hunter (Wests CC) also hail from Alice Springs and were selected in the NT Country Champs team in 2017 and 2018. 

The Alice Springs NT trio are actively involved in Club Cricket and the KFC Women’s Summer League and will provide some stability and experience to the team.

Rianna Carlson (Palmerston CC) starred in the NT Women’s Strike League this year making 101 runs from her three innings as well as taking 8 wickets for the tournament including best figures of 5-19.  Carlson debuted for the NT in 2018 at the Country Championships and backed up her performance with a solid Darwin season, taking out the 2018 Junior Cricketer of the Year Award.

Amber Cloughessy (Southern Districts) represented the NT in 2017 and 2018 and has two NT Strike Seasons under her belt.  She was the best batter in the 2018 Strike League, making 150 from her four matches including a 73* and 57.  She is currently playing the summer season of One Day and T20 matches for Brunswick Cricket Club in Melbourne where she has specialised as a wicket keeper.  Cloughessy has gained a lot from the exposure and experience in the Victorian Association which she’ll be looking to bring back to the NT side.

Chloe Giacomo (Nightcliff) and Alex Blyton (Southern Districts) will debut for the NT in 2019 alongside Olivia Pilkington (Darwin). 

Giacomo was consistent for the Northern Tide in two seasons of the NT Strike League and continues to work hard on her skills, developing and growing in confidence at every outing.  She has 50 career matches to her name and is an emerging talent.  In the top end season she took seven wickets for Nightcliff CC and will gain a lot from the opportunity to represent the NT. 

Alex Blyton (Southern Districts) is another young talent who has played all her cricket in boys’ teams.  She played ten matches in the Junior cricket division in 2018 taking 12/120 for the season including best bowling of 3/10.

Olivia Pilkington (Darwin CC) is our youngest squad member who continues to develop and test herself and will be a force to reckon with in years to come. She debuted in the NT Women’s Strike League in August this year and will grow from the interstate experience.  Playing for Darwin CC Juniors, Pilkington played 15 matches and took 16 wickets at an average of 8.94.

Nicole Honeysett is the NT Assistant Coach and has represented the NT at the National Indigenous Cricket Championships and Country Cricket Championships.  It’s great for the team to have a female coach who can relate to the experience as well as help shape and encourage the younger generation as they start on the cricket pathway.  

Fixtures available on the National Champs website here:

http://www.nationalchamps.com.au/common/pages/public/rv/draw.aspx?entityid=17240&id=RVFIXTURE

and updates will be available on the NT Cricket social media channels via Facebook and Instagram. 

 

Northern Territory - U18 female Team

Alex Blyton

Darwin

Southern Districts CC

Rianna Carlson

Darwin

Palmerston CC

Amber Cloughessy

Darwin

Southern Districts CC

Chloe Giacomo

Darwin

Nightcliff CC

Matisse Hunter

Alice Springs

Wests CC

Monet Hunter

Alice Springs

Wests CC

Rachel Hartung

Alice Springs

Works CC

Olivia Pilkington

Darwin

Darwin CC

Jess Bradley

QLD

 

Imogene Fisk-Walsh

QLD

 

Kira Holmes

QLD

 

Clodagh Ryall

QLD

 

Jemma Savill

QLD

 

Ruby Strange

QLD

 

Coach – TBC (Queensland)

Assistant Coach / Manager – Nicole Honeysett

Physio – Cameron Sutherland