Sydney Thunder Head Coach Trevor Griffin is confident that his young side can achieve success in this year’s Rebel Women’s Big Bash League.
Thunder’s 15-player roster includes six teenagers, with Tahlia Wilson, Phoebe Litchfield and Kate Peterson joining Hannah Darlington, Rachel Trenaman and Saskia Horley in the squad.
The two-time Kia Super League winning coach said the key to success is embracing and supporting local and young talent.
“The international players come in and do their thing, they know their game very well already, it’s more about supporting them and getting them to buy into our style of cricket,” Griffin said.
“I think the difference between teams is what the non-international cricketers do and how we support the non-internationals.
“I think the success that we’ve had in the Kia Super League with the Western Storm has primarily been due to the environment we’ve built, which is very much like a family, which is the same as Sydney Thunder.
“At Western Storm, we had our non-internationals contribute far more than other teams and I think that’s something that’s probably going to put me in a good position for Thunder and supporting our teenagers.
“We had five youngsters in our side, four them were 17, and that brought a real freshness to the side this year and I think that’s really exciting.
“I see that being the same with Thunder. These youngsters have come in with a freshness about them. The way they hit the ball, the way they bowl the ball and the things they do in the field is moving the game forwards and I think that’s very exciting.”
A number of the teenagers impressed in Wednesday night’s practice match against the Sydney Sixers.
“I thought Kate Peterson bowled really well,” Griffin said.
“Phoebe with the bat showed her excitement but also quality in the field. She’s quick across the ground and has a good pair of hands on her.”
Darlington, who is yet to make her WBBL debut, captained the side.
“Hannah captains the Under-18 side, she’s got a good knowledge of cricket and a very good cricketing brain,” he said.
“She also knows the youngsters as well as the senior players, so she’s able to pull everybody together. Looking further ahead for the future of Thunder, it’s a great opportunity to see where she’s at and how we can help develop her to be a future captain for Thunder.”
Sydney Thunder is set to open the first ever standalone WBBL season with a blockbuster Sydney Smash against crosstown rivals the Sydney Sixers at North Sydney Oval on Friday 18 October.
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