Stars recruit English duo for WBBL|06
Brunt and Sciver to don the green alongside Lanning this summer
17 September 2020, 10:02 AM AEST
The Melbourne Stars have lured the services of star England duo Katherine Brunt and Natalie Sciver for the upcoming Rebel WBBL season.
Sciver, who represented the Stars in the first two seasons of the WBBL before joining the Perth Scorchers, follows the lead of former Perth captain Meg Lanning in returning to Melbourne ahead of the sixth edition of the tournament.
🏴 International Stars signed!England duo Katherine Brunt and Nat Sciver join us, strengthening our @WBBL squad! Not long now 💚#TeamGreen— Melbourne Stars (@StarsBBL) September 17, 2020
Similarly, Brunt chalked up 44 matches in orange across the first three seasons of the WBBL, finishing WBBL|03 as the tournament’s leading wicket-taker before a two-year hiatus from the competition.
Brunt and Sciver, who announced their engagement last year, join Lanning, Annabel Sutherland and Mignon du Preez as the club’s marquee signings.
The Stars, desperate for their first finals appearance in the WBBL, have just one spot remaining on their roster, which they are expected to fill next week.
Newly appointed head coach Trent Woodhill, who is currently in England working with the Australian men’s team, is pleased with how his squad is shaping up.
"In Nat and Katherine we’ve got two of England’s most successful cricketers who have been part of the WBBL since the tournament began," Woodhill said.
"We’re pleased to have Nat coming back into green again after a couple of seasons in Perth and Katherine’s experience and bowling pedigree need no introduction.
"It really enhances what is already a good team coming together."
Sciver, 28, who currently sits in third position behind Sophie Devine and Ellyse Perry on the ICC T20I allrounder rankings, will be looking to build on an outstanding WBBL|05 campaign that played a significant role in helping the Scorchers to the finals.
Sciver was the Scorchers’ third most prolific run-scorer, with 342 runs at 38. She also collected six wickets at 39 before international duty called and she was required to depart Australia just before the finals series.
Brunt, 35, is one of England’s most decorated players, having represented her country on 217 occasions since her international debut in 2004.
One of the most fearsome fast bowlers in the women’s game, Brunt will spearhead the Stars’ pace attack also comprising Holly Ferling, Tess Flintoff and Sutherland.
"I’m pleased to have signed for the Stars. It’s a big club and has made some good signings this off-season which should hold us well for the season ahead," Brunt said in a Melbourne Stars statement.
"After playing against a number of these players a lot over the course of my career, I’m looking forward to being on the same side this season."
Cricket Australia last week confirmed a full 59-game will played entirely in Sydney, with the competition beginning on Sunday 25 October.
Details regarding the fixture, venues, broadcast times will be released in due course.
Stars squad so far: Meg Lanning, Katherine Brunt, Nat Sciver, Elyse Villani, Mignon du Preez, Annabel Sutherland, Lucy Cripps, Alana King, Holly Ferling, Erin Osborne, Tess Flintoff, Georgia Gall, Sophie Day, Nicole Faltum.