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June 8, 2022 12:00 PM

Published by Cricket Wellington

All six Wellington Blaze contracted WHITE FERNS have been selected in a 15-strong New Zealand squad for the upcoming Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Captain Sophie Devine is joined by Maddy Green, Amelia Kerr, Jess Kerr, Jess McFadyen and Georgia Plimmer in the squad set to depart for the UK next month.

It’s the first time women’s cricket has featured at the Commonwealth Games, following a men’s 50-over version played at Kuala Lumpur in 1998, when New Zealand won a bronze medal.

The touring party comprises two wicket-keepers in McFadyen and Izzy Gaze; three spinners in Melie Kerr, Eden Carson, and Fran Jonas, a pace bowling quartet of Hannah Rowe, Jess Kerr, Rosemary Mair and Hayley Jensen (with back-up from Devine) and a batting spine of Devine, Green, Suzie Bates Lauren Down and Brooke Halliday.

Today’s announcement coincides with the women's team's first winter training camp at Bay Oval, where Devine said she feels an atmosphere of excitement around players as they prepare for the Games campaign.

“We can’t wait to get on the plane,” Devine said.

“To be the first women’s cricket team to represent the country at a global event like the Commonwealth Games is truly an honour.

“It’s been great to get the group back together this week at Bay Oval and our new squad members are finding their feet and fitting in well.”

NZC chief executive David White said it was a huge honour for cricket to be part of the Commonwealth Games.

“It’s a terrific time for cricket to be back at the Commonwealth Games – and it’s another excellent development for the women’s and girl’s game, both here and around the world,” he said.

“I’m sure the players are going to love the experience of being part of a wider New Zealand team, and the slightly different context of the Games environment.”

NZOC CEO Nicki Nicol extended her congratulations to the squad.

“This is an historic occasion with women’s T20 cricket debuting at the Games,” said Nicol.

“We’re thrilled to be taking this team with us to Birmingham and we can’t wait to watch them kick off a proud legacy for women’s cricket at the Games.”

The naming takes the total number of athletes currently selected to the New Zealand Team for Birmingham 2022 to 95.

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