Lendlease Breakers, Sydney Sixers and Australian allrounder Ashleigh Gardner, has been named the Aboriginal Women’s XI player of the tour after the 1868 Pioneers commemoration tour of the United Kingdom concluded at Trent Bridge on Tuesday.

Despite a loss to finish the tour, Gardner continued to show her class as an allrounder and a leader in the final T20 match against a star-studded ECB Academy side with 3/38 from her four overs, and posted a quick fire 33 from 20 balls in the 116-run defeat.

She top-scored in the Aboriginal Women’s XI total of 9/112 from the allotted 20 overs, in reply to a massive 5/228 posted by the ECB Academy. 

In what was the first tour to the UK by a female Indigenous team, as the women’s player of the tour, Gardner received one of the stumps used as the middle stump on tour that were painted by Aunty Fiona Clarke the great-great granddaughter of Mosquito – one of the players from the 1868 squad.

The Aboriginal Women’s XI captain finished the tour as the leading run scorer and wicket taker for the visitors. Overall, she collected six scalps at 15.67 and scored 168 runs at 56.00 with a highest score of 129 not out from just 71 balls in her team’s only win from four matches on tour against a National Cricket Conference XI. 

Former Australian One-Day and T20 player, and Victorian fast bowler, Scott Boland, was named the men’s player of the tour.

New South Wales batsman Brendan Smith and promising Dubbo teenager Brock Larance both impressed in the Aboriginal Men’s XI fifth win from six matches to finish the tour with a resounding 61-run victory over a Nottinghamshire XI also at Trent Bridge.

Smith smacked five boundaries and two sixes in a striking 43 from 33 balls.

Larance was just as good with both bat and ball. He scored a swift 30 not out from 20 balls and claimed his best figures on tour of 3-27 with his off-spin.

The Aboriginal Men’s XI dismissed Nottinghamshire for 121 in defence of 6/182.

Former Australian allrounder in the shorter formats and captain of the Aboriginal Men’s XI, Dan Christian (61) top-scored. Larance and NSW quick Sam Doggett (3-34) were the stars with the ball.

Smith was the second leading run scorer for the tour with 207 runs at 34.5, 41 runs behind Christian.

Throughout the historic tour Christian posted 248 runs at 62.00.

Larance completed the tour with the healthy haul of five wickets at 18.60, one behind fellow New South Welshman Jonte Pattison and paceman Sam Doggett, who were the equal leading wicket takers with Christian.

Doggett claimed six wickets at 19.66, while Pattison likewise returned six wickets at 25.00 with his leg-spin.


Aboriginal XI Men

5th June – Aboriginal XI def Marylebone CC by 21 runs @ Arundel Castle

5th June – Aboriginal XI def Marylebone CC by 6 wickets @ Arundel Castle

7th June – Aboriginal XI def Surrey by 5 runs @ The Oval

8th June – Aboriginal XI lost to Sussex by 99 runs @ Hove

10th June – Aboriginal XI def Derbyshire by 7 wickets @ Derby

12th June – Aboriginal XI def Nottinghamshire by 61 runs @ Trent Bridge

Aboriginal XI Women

7th June – Aboriginal XI lost to Surrey by 36 runs @ The Oval

8th June – Aboriginal XI lost to Sussex by 79 runs @ Hove

10th June – Aboriginal XI def National Cricket Conference by 137 runs @ Derby

12th June – Aboriginal XI lost to ECB Academy by 116 runs @ Trent Bridge