Annabel Sutherland Q+A

GOLD COAST, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 21: Annabel Sutherland of Australia A leaves the field after being dismissed during game two of the Women's Twenty20 series between Australia A and India A at Bill Pippen Oval on December 21, 2019 in Gold Coast, Australia. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

A kids-only Q+A session with one of Australia’s most up-and-coming sports stars, cricketer Annabel Sutherland


Bryce: Hello there – and welcome to a very special Squiz Kids Q+A — part of our ongoing series of interviews with people in the news, where you – the kids of Australia – get to ask the questions.I’m Bryce Corbett. Today, we’re delighted to welcome to the Squiz Kids hot seat one of Australia’s most exciting up-and-coming sports stars. At the age of only 15, Annabel Sutherland was selected to play for the Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash League, is now an integral member of the Melbourne Stars. Earlier this year, at the age of only 18, Annabel was selected to represent her country and play for Australia as part of our T20 World Cup winning team.

Right now, she’s padding up for the Rebel Women’s Big Bash League set to kick off on October 25 in Sydney – but before she takes to the crease, she’s agreed to take the Squiz Kids hot seat and answer your questions. Annabel Sutherland  – welcome to Squiz Kids! 

Annabel:  Thanks for having me.

Bryce: We’re really excited to have you on Squiz Kids. So, how are the preparations going for the big bash?

Annabel: Yeah pretty well. I think obviously having an Australian Series against New Zealand in the last few weeks has been ideal preparation and not many other sort of players have had any game preparation, so we’re quite lucky to have had some matches played, particularly with everything going on with coronavirus. So yeah, I think we’re feeling pretty good and ready to get into it!

Bryce: And just on that – that was a remarkable victory at the start of the month against New Zealand in the One Day International series? Equalling the world record for most consecutive ODI wins … what a terrific achievement …

Annabel: Yeah, I think obviously it’s a pretty special thing to be a part of obviously. I’ve sort of come in and even just as a younger player to be a part of something like that is is really special. And I know the senior players are definitely pretty proud of what they’ve sort of put together in the group that they’ve been a part of over such a long period of time that’s had such a great history and a lot of success.

Bryce: Well, they’re very lucky to have you, and we are too and we’ve got lots of questions here from Squiz Kids. Shall we jump straight in?
Annabel: Yeah. I’m happy with that.

Bryce: Let’s go. Alright … our first question comes from Alia from Fraser Coast Anglican College …. 

Alia: Hi Annabel, my name is Alia. I’m 10 years old from Fraser coast and Lincoln College in Queensland. My question is was cricket your first interest or did you have other hobbies or sporting interests?

Annabel: I think as a kid, I loved any sport. So I played obviously cricket, I liked AFL, basketball, a little bit of tennis. I pretty much tried every sport under the sun and ended up sort of settling on AFL and Cricket as my two sort of passions which worked well because one was played in the winter and one was played in the summer. So I love playing sport. I’ve got two brothers, so I was happy to be out in the backyard with them as much as I could playing anything that we could sort of get our hands on.

Bryce: Sometimes a bit better than being in the classroom, isn’t it?

Annabel: Yeah, exactly!

BryceOur next question is from Lucius from Yarraman State School in Queensland…

Lucius: Hi Annabelle, my name is Lucias. – I’m 10 years old from Yeoman. My question is how long do you train for each day? And what type of training do you have to do?

Annabel: Good question. It sort of depends on what time of the season we are in. So in pre-season, which runs from about June through August we have longer days. So if it’s a morning session we get in nice and early and probably won’t leave until 12:00 or 1:00, so it’ll be a good hit out, four or five hours, to get everything in. And that sort of includes the cricket side of things which is the fun stuff, I guess so batting, bowling and fielding. And then obviously you’ve got to do a bit of running and and stuff in the gym as well. So I certainly prefer the cricket stuff. But yeah, we have some long days when we’re training.

Bryce: Wow ….. You must get tired ….

Annabel: I’m sort of getting used to it! And we have breaks and that sort of thing to get some food in. But I really enjoy it so it’s not too hard.

Bryce: That helps that’s for sure if you enjoy it …. Alright – let’s go to a question now from Bridie, who’s 10 years old, from Kilsyth in Melbourne: 

Bridie: Hi. My name is Bridie. I’m 10 years old from Kilbride in Victoria. My question is, do you have a special routine to help you prepare before a match?

Annabel: Oh good question. I like to get a big feed in. So if it’s a one-day game, obviously it’s quite a long day that you have to be ready for. So I get a big breakfast in. Other than that, we sort of get to the ground nice and early to get all our warm-up done. But once that’s done, I like to have a little bit of a kick of the footy with the girls, and just muck around for for a little bit before we get into the serious side of the warm-up and start preparing for the match. So yeah, I don’t mind having a little bit of a kick of the footy, but I guess the main thing is making sure I have a big feed, usually it’s breakfast before the the day ahead.

Bryce: That’s great … now here’s a good question from Dannii in Proserpine – up near the Whitsundays in Queensland … and it’s a question a lot of kids had …

Dannii: Hi Annabelle. My name is Dannii, I’m 11 years old from Proserpine State School. My question is, do you get nervous before a match?

Annabel: Yeah. Absolutely. I think particularly the last few months, having had some opportunities to play for Australia. It’s certainly something that I’m very proud of but obviously you want to do well and with that comes nerves. I don’t think nerves are a bad thing because it sort of means you want to do well and you want to perform for the team. So I certainly get nervous! Probably more so when I’m going out to bat because it’s a little bit more overwhelming  – with sort of just yourself out there and the rest of the opposition surrounding you. But I think the main thing is once I’m out there I settle pretty quickly.

Bryce: Alright – jumping now to Adelaide, where 8yo Henry from Hove has a great question …

Henry: Hi Annabelle. My name is Henry. I’m 8 years old from Klimpton Park. My question is –  my dream is to play cricket for Australia. What is one piece of advice you would give to someone who wants to become an Australian cricketer?

Annabel: Yeah. That’s a great question. Well personally that was my dream always growing up to play for my country. So to be doing that now is pretty special and something I’m pretty proud of. But I would say the main thing is just make sure you’re enjoying what you’re doing, so whether that’s going to training each week or going to your games on the weekends, just make sure you’re enjoying it and I guess that means you’re going to put in the effort that you sort of need to get better, and you’re going to want to work hard to get better.

Bryce: Here’s a good question now from Maya in Brisbane.

Maya: Hi Annabelle. My name is Maya, I’m 11 years old from Brisbane. My question is, how do you get motivated to practice when you’re not feeling motivated?

Annabel: Yeah, good question. I think there comes a time where you might be tired and you wake up tired one day and you just don’t feel like training. But I guess I like to enjoy the thought, or the process of trying to get better, and I’m always just trying to think about why. Why I’m training or you know, if it’s going for a run or something, like what this is helping me to do – get fitter or get stronger and faster. So yeah, I try and get sort of competitive with myself and others. I think having teammates around you is a really sort of special thing and that being part of a team sport is quite unique because you’ve got teammates around you to help you through those days where you’re not feeling so motivated. So definitely using the people around you but also just trying to think about why – why are you training, and what you’re getting out of it as well.

Bryce: And that competitive spirit is really important isn’t it to keep you going?

Annabel: Yeah, I think so. I think it’s something that as a team we all sort of have in common. Definitely there are different types of personalities amongst the group, but in the Australian environment everyone has that competitive nature and it’s probably something that’s allowed us to have so much success.

Bryce: Mmm and Louis from Newcastle is going to be really interested in this next answer because you’ve already talked about how much pressure is on you when you’re batting. Here’s a question from him.

Lewis: Hi Annabelle. My name is Louis and I’m 9 years old from Newcastle. My question is, what do you prefer batting or bowling?

Annabel: Yeah, tough question. I think as an all-rounder you sort of can’t really have a favourite because in different points in the game, the captain might turn to you and you might be needed to bowl an over, or you might be you know, promoted up the order or whatever it might be. So you’ve got to be ready to do both and I think the thing I love most about being an all-rounder is that you can contribute both in the batting innings and the bowling innings. So, you know, if you don’t make any runs in the first innings with the bat, then you can come out with the ball and try and prove a point and can still contribute to the team in that way.
Bryce: So chance to have another go.
Annabel: Yeah, exactly. I don’t necessarily have a favourite. It depends on the day and how I go with both bat and ball. So I really enjoy that side of being an all-rounder. It’s tough because you’ve obviously got more to worry about and there’s a lot more going on and you’ve got to train both sides of it, but I really really enjoy the challenge.

Bryce: Mmm. We’ve got a question here from Abby in Hampton Victoria, which I think is an excellent question.

Abby: Hi Annabelle. My name is Abby. I’m 9 years old from Hampton. My question is, have you ever faced any discrimination as a girl playing cricket?

Annabel. Yeah. Good question. I think not early on. I think I was lucky enough to…  I really enjoyed playing with the boys, and against boys. So I grew up playing Junior cricket and for that matter with a boys team. So, you know all the way through till under 15 when I joined the Women’s Club cricket team. But I think I was pretty lucky in the sense that I had really good teammates who didn’t really think any different of me being a female playing with them. So I think whenever we sort of came up against any opposition that had a few things to say about that,  the boys in my team would really look after me and were really good in that sense. But the other thing is that I actually didn’t mind that chat and that sort of thing because I knew that I had the skills to be able to compete with the opposition. So, you know, I was able to earn their respect in that way. So it didn’t really bother me that you know, they might sort of question that I was a girl in an all-boys team or playing against an all-boys team. So yeah, I think you might cop a little bit of flak every now and again, but I think as long as you’ve got good teammates around you who can look after you and then you’ll be fine.

Bryce: That’s a great answer Annabel. And finally, our last question comes from eight year old Millie in Melbourne …

Millie: Hi Annabelle, my name is Millie. I am 8 years old and I am from Melbourne. My question for you is do you have any advice on how to play cricket for the ones that think it’s hard.

Annabel: I think cricket is quite a complicated game, but the other thing is – you’ll improve really quickly if you enjoy playing it. I think that’s the main thing. And then as you play it more I think your skills will get better really quickly. So I think it’s just trying to give yourself time and allow yourself to get better. Like anything it takes time to get better at something. So yeah, I think it’s just about being patient, but the rewards will come if you work hard enough at it, and practice.
Bryce: And practice and patience count for everything don’t they? …

Annabel: Yeah, exactly. And cricket is a game of patience, but it is really exciting when you get an opportunity to show what you’ve trained and practiced out. So yeah, I would say just make sure make sure you’re having fun and give yourself time to get better.

BryceSadly, that’s all we have time for today. An enormous thanks to all of you Squiz Kids who sent in questions for Annabel. As per usual, we had more questions sent in than we had time to ask. Each one was fantastic – but time was against us.  Annabel – thank you so much for taking the time to chat to us today. And remember folks – the Squiz Kids podcast – a daily fix of kid-appropriate news – is out at 7am every morning, via the Squiz Kids website – – or wherever you find your podcasts.

This is Bryce Corbett, signing off – and Annabel, would you please do the honours…

Annabel: Now get out there and have a most excellent day!

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