Run machine returns to Hurricanes for WBBL|08
The Hurricanes’ top run-scorer last season returns to further bolster the club’s batting stocks ahead of the upcoming season
4 August 2022, 04:00 PM AEST
South African Mignon du Preez will return to the Hobart Hurricanes for the upcoming WBBL season, joining friend and compatriot Lizelle Lee in the Apple Isle.
The move further bolsters the Hurricanes’ batting stocks after the club also signed Elyse Villani in June, as they bid for a first ever WBBL title.
The Hurricanes lured du Preez away from the Melbourne Stars last season, and the move paid immediate dividends as the experienced international scored 414 runs in 14 games, over 150 more than the side’s next-best.
She notched four half-centuries in the campaign, in which she averaged 31.84 and struck at 115.
Despite missing the finals for a fifth-straight season last campaign, de Preez said she believed the Hurricanes could do some damage this season, which kicks off on October 13.
“I can’t wait to return to Australia. I love the Big Bash,” she said.
“It was a big decision for me to make the move to the Hurricanes last season, but I can honestly say I had such a great time both on and off the field. I got to know a lot of the girls really well, and as we got to know each other better as a team, our cricket really improved too.”
The news comes a week after the Hurricanes announced the signing of Lee, who revealed that her friend and South African teammate had put in a good word about the club.
"(Mignon) said she really enjoyed her time in the Hurricanes environment last season,” Lee noted last week.
Ironically, the pair – and Villani – had at one stage all played together at the Melbourne Stars.
Du Preez said the important signings, combined with continuity from last season, positions the Hurricanes well in their bid to return to the WBBL finals for the first time since 2016/17.
“We have a lot of the same team we had last year heading into WBBL|08, plus some pretty great additions too, and knowing first-hand what players of the quality of Junior (Villani) and Lizelle (Lee) can bring to a T20 team. I think that puts us in a pretty good position.”
Du Preez is currently with the South African team in Birmingham for the Commonwealth Games, where she has scored 26 against New Zealand and 1 against England in the two group games to date.
She has represented her country on 268 occasions – in 154 ODIs, 113 T20Is and one Test match – and scored three hundreds alongside 25 half-centuries.
Hobart will open their season against Sydney Thunder at Blacktown on October 14.
Hobart Hurricanes WBBL|08 squad (so far): Nicola Carey, Mignon du Preez (South Africa), Maisy Gibson, Heather Graham, Ruth Johnston, Lizelle Lee (South Africa), Emma Manix-Geeves, Hayley Silver-Holmes, Amy Smith, Naomi Stalenberg, Molly Strano, Rachel Trenaman, Elyse Villani.