Newcastle Blasters women's team breaking new ground in T20 Regional Bash finals series

Novocastrian first-class products like Belinda Clark and Leah Poulton may have previously had the chance to play at the Sydney Cricket Ground while representing NSW or Australia.

As well as Hunter-bred duo Sam Bates and Maisy Gibson more recently in the Women's Big Bash League.

However, today marks a significant moment for the Blasters squad contesting the inaugural women's T20 Regional Bash finals series at the historic venue.

Tuesday will be, more than likely, the maiden appearance of an all-female team under the Newcastle senior banner lining up at the SCG.

"For all of the girls, and their family and friends, it's a big occasion," Newcastle Blasters women's coach Steve Taylor said.

The Blasters, who are pitted against the Coffs Coast Chargers first up at 10am, reached the last four having beaten Central Coast Rush by eight wickets at Bill Sohier Park on October 13.

In between times most players featured for either City or Waratah-Mayfield in the debut Newcastle District Cricket Association women's T20 league before Christmas and have continued with various clubs in the Sydney competition.

Taylor has a predominately young group, ranging from Aussie rules convert Meaghan MacDonald aged 30 to teenage wicketkeeper Millie Riley, but knows there's plenty of experience.

"The age probably isn't any real indicator of the experience in this side [Blasters]," Taylor said.

"Some of the younger girls have quite a lot of cricket under their belts, including down in Sydney."

The Blasters, who have been allocated the home dressing sheds, will be led by NSW Country representative Kirsten Smith while Allison McGrath and Abbey Taylor are unavailable with commitments at the Cricket Australia Under-18 National Championships in Tasmania.

"The team is very excited to play on such a famous ground," Smith told Cricket NSW media.

"I think it invites girls to come back and play cricket, as it's a women's competition. It's really key to have more players come back and develop their skills."

Winners from Tuesday's two semis, Illawarra Flames and ACT Aces meet in the other (2pm), progress to a title decider under lights that same night (6pm).

"You're only two good games away from picking up a trophy," Taylor said.

A handful of the Blasters squad were heading down to watch the men's Big Bash League fixture between Sydney Sixers and Melbourne Stars at the SCG beforehand on Monday.

Meanwhile, the men's T20 Regional Bash finals series is scheduled at the same Moore Park facility on Australia Day with the Adrian Chad-captained Lake Mac Attack also tackling the Chargers.

BLASTERS: Kirsten Smith (c), Skye Lovett, Clare Webber, Kate Handley, Cassandra McLaren, Millie Kohl, Millie Riley, Althea Graham, Emma Jayne, Sarah Burns, Meaghan MacDonald, Maddy McGuigan.

This story Newcastle Blasters women's team breaking new ground in state T20 finals first appeared on Newcastle Herald.