WACA Chair Ken Michael AC, Michael Bailey, Em Bowden & Colleen Hayward AM
The WACA has announced its Men’s and Women’s teams for the upcoming National Indigenous Cricket Championships in Alice Springs, with a number of significant additions to both squads making for a strong showing at this month’s tournament.
WA will be fielding an exciting line up in the Men’s team with a number of talented pathway players named including Rex Strickland and Craig Jones.
Current Perth Scorchers Community Rookie Dane Ugle has also been named, along with former Perth Scorchers Community Rookie contract holder Michael Bailey will return as captain for this year’s tournament.
Current WA and BBL player D’Arcy Short will be unavailable due to Sheffield Shield commitments but has continued his involvement in WA's NICC program as the team prepares to depart for Alice Springs.
The WA Women’s Aboriginal XI will head to Alice Springs with a number of experience players including Kavita Pepper, Emily Bowden and Samara Williams who were all picked in the National Women’s Indigenous XI that toured India in 2016.
WACA Female Aboriginal Scholarship holder Allee Bartlett also returns to the side along with a number of Geraldton-based players.
With the appointment WACA Talent Development Coordinator Job van Bunge as Head Coach of the Men’s WA Aboriginal XI, this year’s NICC marks a shift towards providing opportunities for players to gain experience and exposure to the talent pathway.
WACA Community Engagement Manager Roy McNamara-Smith said the closer alignment with WACA High Performance was the result of good collaboration and a commitment by the WACA to develop a program that connected talented Aboriginal players with the pathway.
"We’re really happy with how both our men’s and women’s teams have come together and the support and contribution of our High Performance staff has been critical in allowing us to elevate both the profile and quality of our program to ensure we’re sending teams away that will give their best performance for their state that they can,” McNamara-Smith said.
"We had a number of players from both teams selected in National Indigenous squads last year including D'Arcy Short and heading into this year’s tournament our WACA Aboriginal Programs Coordinator, Larry Kickett, has been working really hard to bring a higher level of structure and support to the program as part of the broader work we’re doing in supporting the growth in Aboriginal participation across the state.”
There will be a series of announcements over the coming weeks about some exciting developments around the governance and development of WACA Aboriginal Programs as teams finalise their preparations for February’s Championships.
WA men’s squad: Zane Atwell (Gosnells), Michael Bailey (South Perth), Bevan Bennell (Claremont- Nedlands), Jay Collard (Kalgoorlie), Dekan John-Furnace (Wyalkatchem), Craig Jones (Rockingham-Mandurah), Tyler McMiles (Gosnells), Hugh Sando (Pinjarra), Rex Strickland (South Perth), Dylan Tucker (Midland), Dane Ugle (Rockingham-Mandurah), Keren Ugle (Waroona), Khylie Ugle (Beverley)
Coach: Job Van Bunge, Assistant Coach: Michael Johnson, Team Manager: Corey O'Brien
WA women’s squad: Allee Bartlett (University), Kirsty Bennell (University), Emily Bowden (Midland-Guildford), Racquel Cross (University), Shakiya Cross (University), Candice Franklin (University), Rikki Garlett (University), Teleisha Hill (University), Katrina Jetta (University), Aggie Manel (University), Dainira Papertalk (University), Kavita Pepper (University), Samara Williams (University),
Coach: Brian Shields, Assistant Coach: Alan Singer, Team Manager: Lenny Papertalk