Three players join the list of contracted players with Chloe Rafferty, Gabrielle Sutcliffe and Kayla Burton coming into the squad, while the Meteors farewell Maitlan Brown after five years in the blue and gold.
Allison McGrath will continue to train with the squad as an uncontracted player, while Meteors veteran and former captain Erin Osborne has made the decision to strike a better balance between her playing commitments and her coaching aspirations.
31-year old Osborne, who represented Australia on 121 occasions, was selected for a player to coach pilot program in 2020, delivered by Cricket ACT and Cricket Australia as part of Australian Cricket’s Press for Progress strategy to become Australia’s leading sport for women and girls. The program was designed to keep players involved in the game and assist players with the transition into retirement. Osborne, who is contracted to the Melbourne Stars for WBBL|07, will continue to train with the squad when her coaching commitments allow.
“I’m very fortunate and grateful to have the support of both Cricket ACT and Cricket Australia to be able to pursue my passion for coaching while continuing to play the game that I love," Osborne said.
“I’ve really enjoyed working with our younger athletes in the pathway programs over the pass 12 months and learning from some of the great coaches involved in Canberra cricket."
Abode Hotels ACT Meteors Head Coach Jonathon Dean said Osborne was making the best decision for the next stage of her career.
“Every player reaches a point in their career where they have to ponder ‘whats next’ and Erin has made great strides to ensure she has a strong coaching career waiting for her once her playing days are over,” Dean said.
“She continues to play a strong role in our plans going forward, whilst also helping Cricket ACT to develop the next generation of Meteors and Comets coming up through the pathway through her various coaching roles.”
Newly contracted player Gabrielle Sutcliffe joined the Meteors program last season as an uncontracted player after showing immense promise through the Meteors Development Squad. The medium pace bowler made her WNCL debut against the NSW Breakers earlier this year, taking 3 for 66 and claiming the wickets of Australian players Alyssa Healy, Ash Gardner and Rachel Trenaman.
After making the move to Canberra in late 2020, Victorian fast-bowler Chloe Rafferty made an instant impact and made her debut in Round 1, eventually earning a full contract upgrade after playing four games in 2020/21. Kayla Burton is the final addition to the squad as an emerging top-order batter coming through the ACT/NSW Country Pathway program.
“Gabby is certainly a player to keep an eye on as she continues to develop and grow her skills. She is an extremely hard-worker and has an incredibly positive attitude towards her craft,” said Dean.
“Chloe came into the Meteors structure last year and we were immediately impressed with her infectious positive energy and willingness to do the hard work. Kayla is the only new face into our squad and will add some fire to our top order alongside our class batters such as Katie Mack, Maddie Penna and Angela Reakes.
“We are disappointed to lose a quality player such as Maitlan from our squad, however we will always put the best interests of the player first and understand that she wanted to be closer to her partner and family and explore other opportunities. We wish her all the best and will take great pride in watching her continue to develop and hopefully reach her goal of representing Australia.
“We are excited that the core of the squad has remain unchanged and we can continue to build on our strengths and work together to give us the best opportunity for a tilt at the title this season.”
A number of players from the Meteors Regional Development Squad will also train alongside the Meteors to provide increased opportunities for skill development and opportunities for future squad selection.
2021/22 ACT Meteors Contracted Players
In: Kayla Burton, Gabrielle Sutcliffe, Chloe Rafferty
Out: Erin Osborne, Maitlan Brown, Allison McGrath
Squad: Angela Reakes, Katie Mack, Madeline Penna, Kayla Burton, Gabrielle Sutcliffe, Chloe Rafferty, Carly Leeson, Matilda Lugg, Olivia Porter, Rebecca Carter, Erica Kershaw, Amy Yates, Nicola Hancock, Zoe Cooke.