Cheatle shares important message for fellow cricketers

Having twice been diagnosed with skin cancer by the age of 25, the left-arm quick has urged other cricketers to undergo regular checks

Test quick Lauren Cheatle has detailed her desire to rebound from the anguish of a second skin cancer diagnosis, while hoping it acts as a wake-up call for cricketers.

One month after making her Test debut in India in December, Cheatle's summer was ended early when doctors discovered a melanoma on the 25-year-old's neck.

The diagnosis came as a shock to Cheatle, who had only gone in for a check on a mark on her thigh before white halo was spotted around the mole on her neck.

The melanoma has since been removed without any of the cancer spreading with Cheatle now waiting for the wound to heal before bowling again.

"I was pretty surprised, a bit shocked. Pretty upset at the time as well," Cheatle told AAP.

Cheatle bowls for Australia, against India on Test debut in December 2023 // Getty

"I had no idea, it had none of the normal signs that I would have been looking at for myself before going to see them.

"Professionally, it was pretty upsetting and disappointing.

"But at the same time my health is paramount especially with my history in skin cancers."

Previously diagnosed with an early-stage skin cancer in her leg in 2021, Cheatle's most-recent prognosis couldn't have come at a more frustrating time.

A debutant for Australia at age 17 in 2016, the left-armer has previously admitted she thought her international career was over amid a slew of shoulder operations.

A full Weber WBBL|09 campaign helped her win a Baggy Green this summer, before the latest skin cancer diagnosis ruled her out of the WACA Test against South Africa.

"I was hopeful to be in and around the squad selection. So to not be available was disappointing," Cheatle said.

"And then off the back of that the WPL (in India) and (this month's) Bangladesh tour ... it sucked.

"I've got to try my best to put my name up for selection now. To see (fit-again fellow-quick) Tayla (Vlaeminck) back is super exciting. I'm chuffed for her.

"The best thing I can do is enjoy my cricket and have a really good pre-season and set myself up for our domestic season.

"If Australian selection follows that, so be it. If it doesn't, (I want to) just start playing real consistently, and being on the park for as long as possible."

Cheatle will be back bowling by the pre-season and is available to be drafted in The Hundred.

Cheatle bowls Wolvaardt with a beauty

But the Bowral junior has conceded she will now not be picked for October's T20 World Cup in Bangladesh.

Beyond that, though, Cheatle can see a real-life lesson.

All Cricket NSW players still in Sydney underwent skin and eye checks on Friday, in a new initiative by the state.

Cheatle is also now having full-body imaging once every four months and hopes her story encourages others to be regularly checked.

"I've had two skin cancers by age 25. We live in a country where it's so prevalent, two-in-three get it. And our job is in the sun," Cheatle said.

"It's nice now that you can see the girls change behaviours around choosing to wear a long sleeve or everyone putting on sunscreen at the same time.

"The messaging around getting checked every year and the early diagnosis is so important. I've been lucky both times are early enough."