29 June 2015

University of Queensland student and international cricketer Holly Ferling is more determined than ever to don the green and gold for this year’s Women’s Ashes series, after a back injury forced her out of last year’s season.

The fast bowler will travel to England with her Southern Star teammates next month for her third Women’s Ashes series.

“We’ve always been able to beat England in the World Cup finals but we don’t seem to do as well when we have a whole series against them,” Miss Ferling said.

“The last series was really close and I think we are stronger and wiser than we were then.

“We’ve got a new coach, some new faces in the side and a couple of new support staff, so it has shaped up to be one of our best pre-seasons yet, so fingers crossed that turns into performances in England.”

The UQ Bachelor of Health, Sport and Physical Education student began playing cricket at the age of 11 and had had the Ashes in her sights ever since.

“I used to watch my brother play and sometimes would help out at his club training, but it wasn’t until I was asked by a friend to trial for my region’s school sport side that I actually started playing,” Ms Ferling said.

“I was lucky enough to make the Under 12s Queensland schoolgirls side after only playing cricket for two months.”

After graduating, Holly hopes to help motivate and encourage high school students to reach their potential through sport.

She said managing her time across university and cricket commitments meant she often spent hours studying in and around training.

“I have never wanted my cricket to slip as a result of my study, and vice versa, and UQ has supported me and allowed me to pursue both of my careers,” she said.

“Female athletes are yet to be paid at a full-time status, however we almost get the best of both worlds.

“We get to set up our careers while playing our sport. I think it leaves us better off in the long run.”

The team will play their first Ashes match on 21 July, with the series involving one test, three one-day internationals and three Twenty20s.

After the Ashes, Ms Ferling will play in the Women’s National Cricket League domestic one-day competition, the Women’s Big Bash in December/January and tours against India and New Zealand next year.

“The Big Bash is a really exciting competition, which is set to change women’s cricket in Australia and hopefully generate a really marketable product for sponsors to jump on board in the coming years, just like the men’s Big Bash League,” Ms Ferling said.

Visit UQ Sport for information on UQ’s elite athlete scholarships and support services.

Media: Kim Cooper, UQ Sport, 07 3346 6243 or kimc@uqsport.com.au or Caroline Bird, UQ Communications, 07 3365 1130 or c.bird1@uq.edu.au