Hervey Bay’s Beth Mooney after her debut for the state women’s team, the Queensland Fire, in the Women’s National Cricket League yesterday.
Hervey Bay’s Beth Mooney after her debut for the state women’s team, the Queensland Fire, in the Women’s National Cricket League yesterday.

Mooney catches day in big time

WHEN Beth Mooney was at school in Victoria some years ago, a young boy taunted her.

“You can’t play cricket – girls are no good,” he said.

He’d probably change his opinion if he saw the 16-year-old from Hervey Bay now.

The talented young wicket-keeper yesterday made her debut for the state women’s team, the Queensland Fire, in the Women’s National Cricket League showdown against the Western Fury at Allan Border Field in Brisbane.

Mooney replaced her idol, Australian and Queensland women’s cricket captain Jodie Fields, behind the stumps for the one-day game.

Fields strained a hamstring while batting in the Twenty20 game against the Fury at the Gabba on Saturday but it wasn’t until Sunday evening that Mooney got the call she’d always dreamt about since she first played for a Queensland junior team.

Her father Chris said he knew something good had happened when he saw his daughter, the vice-captain of the state under 17 team which finished second in the nationals last week, walking towards him in the garden.

“I was mowing the grass and I just knew something was up when I saw her,” Chris said.

“For a start, you couldn’t wipe the smile off her face so that was a bit of a giveaway.

“She just told me that she been selected for the Fire and was grinning from ear-to-ear when she said it – there was no hiding the joy on her face.”

Despite the late call-up, Chris said there was no panic about getting his daughter to Brisbane for the game.

“She was supposed to be attending a four-day camp at the Cricket Australia Centre of Excellence with the Australian under 18 women’s squad so she was already booked on the early morning flight,” he said.

“She was up and about early and rearing to go – I think anyone picked to play for their state would be.”

As for the game itself, Western Fury batted first and scored an impressive nine for 268 off its allotted 50 overs.

Beth took a catch, that of Western Fury opener and Australian representative, Lauren Ebsary, for 42.

She also didn’t concede a bye in the big total.

In reply, Queensland could only manage 125 with Beth, who batted at number nine, scoring 11 off 19 balls including one boundary.

Beth said she only had herself to blame for her dismissal which saw her caught behind.

“I didn’t move my feet,” she said

“It’s all part of a learning experience.”

But did she enjoy her first taste of life at the top?

“The standard was pretty high but I loved every minute of it,” she said.

“It was a big step up coming from the under 17s, although playing CA Cup (Second XI) helped me a lot.”

Beth also said she was made to feel very welcome by her team-mates.

“They’re lovely girls,” she said.

“The standard was pretty high but I loved every minute of it”



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