Kara Sutherland burst on to the National League scene last season with a Player of the Match performance in her debut for the Lend Lease Breakers.
A gun player from her days in the NSW Youth squads, Sutherland by her own admission hasn’t been in the best form during her second season at the top level, however, she is looking forward to turning that all around at the tail-end of the 2011/12 summer which includes a tour to New Zealand with the Australian Youth team in March.
How do you think you went during the NSW Second XI’s tour to New Zealand and did you find conditions much different to what you experience in Sydney?
The NSW Second XI tour to NZ was an incredible opportunity provided by Cricket NSW, especially in the absence of the Cricket Australia Cup this season.
To be honest I didn't find the conditions that different given the wet summer we've had here! The opposition did tend to have more slow-medium bowlers which were quite difficult to adjust to, but as a team we were quite successful winning three out of four matches and our performance really lifted with each game.
Early next month you’re heading back to New Zealand with the Australian Youth team, the Shooting Stars. What are you hoping to get out of that tour?
I'm really looking forward to heading to Christchurch, particularly after last year’s tour was cancelled because of the earthquake.
Hopefully I'll be able to play more of an all-round role - I'm really hoping to end the season on a high with some solid performances with both bat and ball.
Playing under coach, Belinda Clark, will also be an invaluable experience and I'm sure I will learn a lot from her.
How did you find your second season with the Lend Lease Breakers?
I feel like I'm starting to find my feet in the Lend Lease Breakers squad, even though I only played the one WNCL match this season.
I've been really disappointed with my on-field results and the obvious consequent non-selection, but am now focussed on putting in some good performances for Universities in the last few rounds of Grade cricket.
On a positive note, I wanted to improve my fitness this season and after testing last week I'm really happy with how far this aspect of my game has come.
What were the reasons behind your move from Campbelltown-Camden to Universities for Grade cricket this summer, and has the move paid off?
The main reason I made the move was that I was lucky enough to receive a Ben Lexcen Sports Scholarship from the University of NSW and one of the attached conditions was that I play for the Universities Women's Cricket Club.
I'm really enjoying Grade cricket this season and I think changing clubs has certainly helped my game as we have a great coach and I've also learnt a lot playing with Alex (Blackwell) and Rach (Haynes). I've loved having to take more responsibility when we've had so many players out due to representative commitments as well.
What are you doing with yourself outside of cricket? I understand that you’re enjoying playing soccer in the winter?
I'm actually about to start a new university degree which I'm really excited about!
After completing my first year of study in 2011, I've now transferred from a Bachelor of Social Science (Criminology) at University of NSW to a Bachelor of Applied Science (Exercise and Sport Science) at Sydney University.
I'm currently working two jobs six days a week, so I can't wait to get back to uni and have a bit of a break!
I started playing soccer last year and really enjoyed it. I'm currently still trying to decide whether to play again this season or take up Cross Fit training. I'm hoping to do a half-marathon in May and complete the “Tough Mudder” challenge in September!