A leg injury – and an impossible race against time – has cruelled exciting all-rounder Olivia Porter’s shot at making her Rebel Women's Big Bash League debut for Sydney Thunder this summer.
Porter, who was signed to a WBBL|06 contract after impressing Thunder’s management last season as a Local Replacement Player, has been sidelined by a Tibial Stress Reaction.
“It’s like really bad shin splints,” was how Thunder physiotherapist Katie Ryan explained the injury to Porter’s right tibia.
Ryan said Porter would miss the season because time was against her playing a part in Thunder’s regular season campaign.
“Olivia will need three weeks where she’s unable to do any impact activities – so that’s bowling and running,” said Ryan. “She’s a fast bowler and that’s a high impact activity.
“Besides not running for three weeks, she’ll need a slow, progressive return to loading over another three-to-four weeks. The timeline for Olivia’s recovery means she’ll be unavailable for the regular season.”
After she was signed to her WBBL|06 contract, coach Trevor Griffin praised Porter for proving herself during last summer’s training sessions.
“She didn’t come into the nets and go easy on any of the other players and I really like that competitiveness,” said Griffin.
Porter’s talent was also recognised by the ACT Meteors who recruited her to play in their Women’s National Cricket League season.
The 18-year-old said while she was disappointed by the setback, she’d do everything possible to return to the cricket field while cheering on Sydney Thunder.
“I’m looking forward to seeing the WBBL competition thrive, especially during these hard times,” said Porter. “And I really hope to see the Thunder do really well this season.
“Unfortunately, I just can’t make the cut-off time. If it was a longer tournament, I’d still be around the girls and doing my rehab. Unfortunately, times have changed, and you just have to adapt as well as you can.
“This is something I’ll learn from, and I will move forward.”
The full 59-match WBBL season begins on Sunday 25 October, with Thunder taking on crosstown rivals the Sydney Sixers at North Sydney Oval on the opening day of the tournament.
Members of the Thunder Nation will get free entry to crowd-friendly Thunder WBBL|06 matches.
Memberships start from $40 and offer access to a host of new benefits and exclusive discounts.
Sydney Thunder WBBL Squad
Head Coach: Trevor Griffin
WBBL|06 Squad: Rachael Haynes (C), Sam Bates, Tammy Beaumont, Hannah Darlington, Saskia Horley, Shabnim Ismail, Sammy-Jo Johnson, Heather Knight, Anika Learoyd, Phoebe Litchfield, Kate Peterson, Lauren Smith, Rachel Trenaman, Tahlia Wilson