Three new faces have been included in a squad of Australia's most exciting young female talent, who will look to push their cases for higher honours at a camp in Brisbane next month.
The 14-player 2016-17 Commonwealth Bank Shooting Stars development squad features 11 players who were part of the team's tour of Sri Lanka in April, joined by NSW leg-spinner Maisy Gibson, Tasmanian fast bowler Erin Lawler and South Australian seamer Samantha Betts.
The group will attend a camp at the Bupa National Cricket Centre in Brisbane from 26-30 September, where they will play a series of matches against a NSW Academy side.
"We’ve identified these players as having the potential to play for Australia in the future, after they impressed at different stages last summer and on the tour of Sri Lanka earlier this year," Women’s National Selector Shawn Flegler said.
"We’re keen to see the continued development of these promising and exciting players."
The squad includes rising Indigenous talent Ashleigh Gardner, who starred in Sri Lanka earlier this year, scoring the only century of the tour - a match-winning 117 against the hosts.
The 19-year-old from NSW, who played for the Sydney Sixers in WBBL|01, also captained Australia's national Indigenous women's team on their tour of India in May.
Flegler also praised young Victorian allrounder Sophie Molineux, who forced her way into the Shooting Stars squad after strong performances for the Melbourne Renegades in WBBL|01 and as player of the tournament at this year's Under-18 Championships.
"Ash Gardner is one to watch and she showed her potential in Sri Lanka and India, following good performances at domestic level last summer," Flegler said.
"Sophie Molineux carried her excellent form from the WBBL and the U18s championships to Sri Lanka, where she was a stand out with both bat and ball.
"Maisy Gibson is one of three exciting additions to the squad, having helped the Sydney Thunder to the WBBL title last summer.
"The September camp is a great opportunity for players to hone their skills ahead of the domestic season and push their cases for international selection."
A Shooting Stars squad will again tour Sri Lanka in March 2017k, while the Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars are set to host both South Africa and New Zealand this summer - tours that will bookend the second edition of the WBBL.
Shooting Stars Squad 2016-17: Megan Banting (WA), Samantha Betts (SA), Hayleigh Brennan (Vic), Ashleigh Gardner (NSW), Masiey Gibson (NSW), Heather Graham (WA), Nicola Hancock (ACT), Erin Lawler (Tas), Tahlia McGrath (SA), Sophie Molineux (Vic), Alex Price (SA), Lauren Smith (NSW), Belina Vakarewa (NSW), Amanda Jade Wellington (SA)