Number one remains the aim

Posted in England Women

It has been an incredible experience being with the England squad in Bangalore for a ten-day training camp and I think the whole squad emerged as better cricketers.

The camp was very intense, as we trained or played every day, and we were exposed to players and conditions that we wouldn’t be able to encounter anywhere else in the world.

It was a great learning experience to face some of the U17 boys from the state team – I don’t think any of our side has ever faced players who spin the ball as much.

Although I worked really hard on my bowling, I also feel that I have really improved my batting, especially against spin bowling, which will be important when facing teams at the ICC Women’s World Cup.

It was nice to spend some time with my England colleagues, as I have been living in Sydney for the past month which has been a great way to prepare for the tournament next March.

I am playing club cricket for Bankstown in the Sydney Premier Grade League, which is a great standard of cricket as the likes of Alex Blackwell, Lisa Sthalekar and Suzie Bates all play in the competition, and it helps me get used to some of the grounds that we will play on at the ICC Women’s World Cup.

I am sharing a house with some of the other England players who are spending the English winter playing in Sydney which is great fun. We are only 20 minutes away from the Sydney Cricket Ground and as well as club training I have been invited to some New South Wales Breakers practice sessions to bowl in the nets.

Holly Colvin is part of the Breakers squad and I know a few of the other girls so it is a good atmosphere. We also arrange group sessions for all the England girls so we can keep on top of our skills.

There is a league game every Sunday and a gym just around the corner from where we live so there is plenty of opportunity to further my game. I have also been lucky to get some work experience at the University of Sydney, where I spend three days a week working in the lab, which I think is important for me to further my career outside cricket after graduating from University College London.

Sydney is a superb city to live in and already there is a buzz building ahead of the ICC Women’s World Cup. I attended the launch of the event last month and hopefully we can really build the profile of the event so that we can get some great crowds at the tournament.

For now, I just want to focus on getting my fitness and bowling right ahead of 2009, and see if I can maintain my number one status in the Reliance Mobile ODI Women’s Player Rankings.

For more information on the ICC Women's World Cup go to www.icc-cricket.com