Rebel WBBL|04

Fitzpatrick embracing cricket's evolution

Former Australia quick Catherine Fitzpatrick joins Billy Murdoch and Dean Jones as this year's Hall of Fame inductees

Jonathan Healy

11 February 2019, 12:31 PM AEST

Former Australia fast bowler Cathryn Fitzpatrick is excited about the future of the women's game and believes it can grow to a new level as other countries follow the lead of the Rebel WBBL.

Fitzpatrick played 109 ODIs for Australia during a 15-year career when female cricketers still held full-time jobs outside of cricket and when the women's game didn't receive the same attention it does today. 

But the recent rise of the WBBL and the growing stature of international women's cricket means the landscape has changed greatly since Fitzpatrick terrorised opposition batters with her explosive pace.

Fitzpatrick in action for Australia in 2000 // Getty Images
Fitzpatrick in action for Australia in 2000 // Getty Images

And Fitzpatrick, who also played 13 Tests for Australia and coached the national side, thinks the female game will continue to grow and is looking forward to sitting back and watching it evolve.

"Seeing other countries and deeper competition in the women’s game is going to bring a lot more people into it," Fitzpatrick told cricket.com.au on Monday ahead of being inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame.

"We have seen what the Women’s Big Bash (WBBL) has done for cricket around the world and if India and the Women's IPL get up I think it can go to a new level again."

Fitzpatrick was announced as one of three former players that will be inducted into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame, with batting greats Billy Murdoch and Dean Jones joining her in receiving the honour at the Australian Cricket Awards night on Monday night.

While Fitzpatrick was known for her exploits with the ball, Murdoch and Jones will be remembered for their efforts with the bat after the duo forged superb individual careers during vastly different eras.

Murdoch (bottom right) pictured in a team of some the greatest ever NSW players // Getty Images
Murdoch (bottom right) pictured in a team of some the greatest ever NSW players // Getty Images

Murdoch captained Australia in 16 Test matches between 1880 and 1890, with scores of 153no and 210 at The Oval in 1882 and 1884 among his greatest deeds.

Jones was even more prolific, with the Victorian finishing his career with a Test batting average of 46.55 that was highlighted by a brilliant 210 in stifling conditions in the memorable tied Test against India in Madras in 1986.

He also helped change the one-day game with his aggressive batting during the 1980s and played a big part in Australia's successful World Cup campaign in 1987.

Dean Jones in action for Australia // Getty Images
Dean Jones in action for Australia // Getty Images

Australian Cricket Hall of Fame chairman Peter King said the three inductees were well deserved, given the trio had all made a strong contribution to Australian cricket over a prolonged period.

"After healthy deliberation, the selection committee of the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame have selected another group of outstanding inductees to join this elite collection of Australian cricket legends," King said.

"These three inductees are very worthy of this honour and we are delighted in induct them alongside their peers and contemporaries at the Australian Cricket Awards on February 11."