Heat full of burning desire for new season
CRICKET: Beth Mooney is hoping the Brisbane Heat can channel the Queensland spirit as it bids for success in the second staging of the Women's Big Bash League.
The Heat, which begins its campaign with a double-header against the Sydney Sixers on Sunday and Monday at North Sydney Oval, includes the majority of the Queensland Fire side, which reached the 50-over Women's National Cricket League final last weekend.
The Fire was soundly beaten by the star-studded New South Wales team by nine wickets after Mooney was out to Southern Stars teammate Rene Farrell on the first ball of the game.
But despite that defeat, Mooney said there were plenty of positives to take into WBBL II.
"The most important thing at the Brisbane Heat is just worrying what we do and controlling what we can control,” the 22-year-old left-handed batter said.
"That's been a big part of our success so far this season with the Queensland Fire.
"If you look at the result on the weekend it's not hard to see that cricket's a pretty unforgiving sport.
"I think we played some really good cricket throughout the season and were the form team in the competition and then unfortunately we just stumbled when it really mattered.
"That loss is going to hurt us for a little bit. I feel that we can go on to bigger and better things and hopefully we can channel that into the WBBL and go really well.
"It's a bitter pill to swallow. You almost don't want to make the final if you play like that.
"But I think there's a lot of positives we can take out of it going into the WBBL.
"I really hope that we look at those rather than what went wrong.”
The Sydney Thunder is the reigning WBBL champion.
Mooney said the Thunder was an unexpected winner of the tournament and was hoping the Heat could fly under the radar this time around after failing to make the finals last year.
"I think we are in a good spot as Brisbane Heat players because I think we are underdogs given how we performed last year,” she said.
"We have kept pretty much the same squad that made the WNCL final aside from Grace Harris, so that's really exciting for us and will help us go a long way in this tournament.”
The Heat announced its final squad yesterday at the franchise's official season launch.
International stars Deandra Dottin from the West Indies and India's Smriti Mandhana complement the likes of Australian stars Delissa Kimmince, who captains the team, Jess Jonassen and Holly Ferling, with Mooney saying the overseas players have a huge part to play.
"They are massive signings for us,” Mooney said.
"Dottin's a really high-quality talent. She's one of the few people in women's cricket who has the ability to take the game away from the other team.
"I think it's really exciting that we have a prospect like that in our team.
"Smriti can obviously learn a lot coming to Australia from India. She is quite young, so she will be keen to learn a lot off us as we will off her.”