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“Feels like I’m putting the jersey on for the first time again”: Cheatle

16 November 2020

More than 660 days have passed since left-arm pace bowler Lauren Cheatle wore the magenta but that streak should end on Tuesday afternoon against the Brisbane Heat at Sydney Showground Stadium.

Lauren Cheatle is expected to make a long-awaited return from injury on Tuesday against the Brisbane Heat and says it feels like making her WBBL debut again.

The Sixers’ left-arm quick underwent a left shoulder reconstruction last November – to follow her right shoulder reconstruction in 2017 – and a bicep operation also in the last 12 months, putting her on the sidelines for much of the last two years including all of WBBL|05.

“It feels like I’m putting the jersey on for the first time again,” the 22-year-old said.

“I’m really, really nervous, but I’m also extremely excited.

“It’s been a long time since I played for the Sixers obviously, and even playing a game in general. I’m really, really keen.”

Lauren Cheatle in action during WBBL|04

Her rehabilitation from the recent shoulder and bicep injuries have been arduous, but as is her attitude, Cheatle is taking away the positives that she can transition into her cricket.

“The work outside of the normal team hours is probably the most difficult part I found over the last couple of months and the amount of work on the little stuff that you kind of forget when you’re flying.

“I’m hoping I can carry that into my cricket, the little one percenters and those little things you kind of forget about.”

Lauren Cheatle speaks about expected return

When asked what it will feel like when captain Ellyse Perry throws her the ball for the first time on Tuesday, Cheatle said “it was really hard to put into words what I am feeling.”

“I just couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunity to play for the Sixers again and the teammates that I have.”

The Sixers are hoping to break a string of four recent losses when they meet the Heat – who they defeated in their first encounter of WBBL|06 – and make a run to secure their place in the WBBL|06 Finals with just four matches remaining.

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That match is followed by the first Sydney Smash of WBBL|06, on Wednesday at Sydney Showground Stadium, after the season opener was abandoned due to rain.

v. Brisbane Heat

12 matches – 5 wins, 7 losses (Sixers defeated the Heat earlier in the tournament at Blacktown International Sportspark by 24 runs)

v. Sydney Thunder

12 matches – 6 wins, 5 losses, 1 no result (those results include a Super Over loss in WBBL|02)

The Sixers have named a squad of 14 players, with the final 11 for each game to be confirmed at the bat flip.

Hard hitting allrounder Ash Gardner, who left the Sixers last match during the first innings as part of the sport’s concussion protocol, has been included with a decision on her availability made in due course.

WBBL Squad v Brisbane Heat (17/11/20) and v Sydney Thunder (18/11/20):

- Sarah Aley (shirt number 3)

- Erin Burns (29)

- Stella Campbell (18)

- Lauren Cheatle (5)

- Maddy Darke (7)

- Ashleigh Gardner (6)

- Lisa Griffith (28)

- Alyssa Healy (77)

- Jodie Hicks (14)

- Emma Hughes (22)

- Marizanne Kapp (17)

- Ellyse Perry (C) (8)

- Angela Reakes (30)

- Dane Van Niekerk (23)