MZ: How does it make you feel when the Olympics is on the horizon and that you could have been in line to make the team?
I'm like most athletes that love when the Olympics are on and you're able to watch the world's best compete at the ultimate event. My best opportunity was to go to the London 2012 games but unfortunately missed out on the final 16 which was heart-breaking at the end of a really grueling centralisation period, but an experience I will never forget.
I still follow how the girls go and they are looking in really good shape heading to Rio. My own experience with the team gives me a great appreciation for the amount of hard work, time and energy that goes into an Olympic campaign so I will be cheering the girls on from a TV somewhere around the world!
MZ: When did you choose between Hockey and Cricket and what was that like making the decision at the time?
I had been really lucky in my sporting career to be able to juggle both sports for a number of years but the first time I had to really choose between the two was heading into the Olympic campaign in 2012. It was an incredibly difficult decision - I'd never not played cricket during the summer since I was 4 so to not have that was both weird and exciting. I found myself at club cricket matches most Saturday's and occasionally rolling the arm over just in case I might be able to squeeze a game in somewhere!
After missing selection for the London Olympics, I was given the opportunity to jump back in with the White Ferns and head to the World T20 in Sri Lanka which was another awesome experience and made me thankful that I had been having the odd hit! With the release of the NZC development contracts in 2013 I was again left with another decision about which sport to pursue and being offered one of these contracts definitely made my decision [to choose cricket] easier.
MZ: And what about now, it seems like women’s cricket on the crest of a wave and is pretty exciting to be part of?
It's incredible to think how far the women's game has come even in the last 5 years, with the introduction of the Women's Big Bash in Australia and the Kia Super League starting in the UK, there are opportunities around the world. I'm absolutely chuffed to be involved in both competitions and have really seen big improvements in my own game as well as learning from players who I usually only ever come across on the other side of the pitch.
The other major positive has been the audience that has followed the women's game, some of the stats that came out of the WBBL last summer saw televised games with higher viewers than the men's A-League and NBL. There has always been a huge argument that there just isn't the audience for the women's game but hopefully with figures like the WBBL those ideas are changing.
MZ: So, you are off to play in the Kia Super League in the UK, what are you looking forward to the most and how are you adapting to this new era of opportunity?
As I briefly mentioned before the opportunity to play in competitions around the world and alongside some of the best players in the world is something that I am most looking forward to. It's also great preparation before the 50-over World Cup that England are hosting next year, exposure to their conditions in any format is extremely valuable. With so many opportunities now available it's been a massive learning curve understanding how to peak at the right time physically as well as listening to your body and taking things easy when you need to. The travel has also been a challenge at times with one period last summer where I played 7 games (3x T20, 4x 50 over) in 3 different cities across 2 countries in the space of 10 days!
MZ: What is you biggest challenge when travelling and playing sport at an international level?
Personally, health is a massive challenge for me playing sport at an international level - I have had Type 1 Diabetes since I was 15, which has added a whole lot of other dimension to things. I've been really fortunate to have a great medical team around me that understands what is required to allow me to perform at the top level, while also ensuring that I can maintain good control of my diabetes.
Otherwise, although it's a privilege to be able to travel the world there are definitely times where I miss my own bed and hanging with family and friends...nothing beats Wellington on a good day!
MZ: While new opportunities are emerging, you still need to complete other work to keep paying the bills, what are you doing work wise this winter?
That's a massive challenge for a lot of girls in the NZ set up as contracts/payment aren't at a level that would allow us to train and play full time, so a majority of us have to supplement that with other work. I'm really fortunate to work for CricHQ which as you can tell by the name are all about cricket!
They allow me real flexibility in my training and touring schedule while still being able to earn some extra money when I'm in town. They also help me out with my own cricket performance with their platform that has a database full of stats from players and competitions around the world and the ability for me to keep my followers up to date with its own social media platform.