Big St Hilda's presence in Sparks

Georgia Heffernan is one of eight past or present St Hilda's Collegiate pupils in the Otago...
Georgia Heffernan is one of eight past or present St Hilda's Collegiate pupils in the Otago Sparks squad for this weekend. Photo: Getty Images
The Otago Sparks might want to consider changing their name to the St Hilda's Collegiate XI.

The Sparks team for the back-to-back one-dayers against Wellington at the Basin Reserve this weekend has been named and it features eight past or present pupils of the school.

With White Ferns trio Suzie Bates, Leigh Kasperek and Katey Martin in the West Indies at the ICC Women's World T20 tournament, the Sparks have an opportunity to give some of the fringe players a run.

St Hilda's has traditionally provided a good core of the squad, but eight must be some kind of record.

Polly Inglis will captain the side in the absence of Martin and will be joined in the squad by former St Hilda's pupils Caitlin Blakely, Bella James and twins Georgia and Kate Heffernan.

Olivia Gain, Emma Black and Eden Carson are current pupils at the school and get their chance in the absence of the White Ferns.

Yorkshire all-rounder Alice Davidson-Richards (24) has been brought in to bolster the squad. She replaces Australian all-rounder Lisa Griffith, who was only available for the opening five twenty20 fixtures in Lincoln late last month.

Davidson-Richards made her England debut this year. She played one ODI against India then five twenty20 internationals against India and Australia.

The women's domestic season is a punctuated one, with large breaks in the schedule.

The season got under way with five twenty20 games, but now switches to the one-day format.

After this weekend's games against Wellington, Otago will not play again until early December. It will host Canterbury in Oamaru on December 1 and 2 before returning to Dunedin to host Auckland in back-to-back one-dayers a week later.

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