A DECADE-LONG CAREER OF NICOLA BROWNE
Nicola Jane Browne is a former New Zealand cricketer. She is an all-rounder, good at both right-handed batting and right-arm medium bowling experienced in all three formats of cricket. Born on 14th September 1983, in the small town of Matamata in Waikato, New Zealand, Browne has had an incredible cricket journey of success. For more such cricket samachar, keep scrolling.
Undiscovered Passion For Cricket
Browne played almost every sport growing up including rugby, cricket, netball, football, etc. Born in a small town in New Zealand, she had a limited number of children in her school to play with and therefore played not just cricket but also other sports.
She was known among the best athletes in her college and was even recognized nationally for junior tennis. Her height gave her the unsaid advantage on the volleyball net and she loved the challenges that came with playing netball.
Pat Malcolm, the head of the Northern District Cricket Association in New Zealand, during one of Browne’s college competitions, spotted her. He was impressed by her natural pace and guided Browne to play professional cricket. The encouragement from other members, and her coach made her confident about her skills.
From A Bowler To An All-Rounder
Nicola loved cricket, but her love for the ball was certainly more than her love for the bat. In her initial years, she started by only bowling and fielding for the team and batting occasionally. It was boredom that compelled Browne to learn the art of different batting strokes. A few months after practice, she developed as an all-rounder.
Domestic Cricket Career
She began her domestic cricket career with the Northern Districts women’s cricket team, a representative of the Northern District Cricket Association in New Zealand.
Nicola switched to playing for the Australian Capital Territory in the year 2013. Her last domestic match was with Australian Capital Territory Women’s team against South Australia in 2016. She scored 7 runs in 6 balls and gave 16 runs in 3 overs. Overall, her performance was average.
Browne has played 102 games in her domestic career with the highest batting score of 120 in her match against Auckland.
She made her test debut against India in 2003 at Vapi. Her batting was not very impressive but was able to plug one wicket off in the entire game.
Her second and last test series was against New Zealand. She scored 23 runs on 73 balls and 3 boundaries with fours in the first innings. She could not take any wickets for her team this time. Both the test matches came to a tie, and Nicola’s performance in test cricket was easily forgettable.
One Day International
Browne’s 2002 ODI debut was the calm before storm. Her first ODI against Australia Women was not the most memorable of her performances. But she went on to play 125 matches scoring 2002 runs and knocking 83 wickets out.
In the ODI series against India in 2006, Nicola, as an all-rounder contributed heavily to New Zealand’s 4-1 win in the series. The last match of her ODI career was against West Indies Women in the year 2014. She scored 22 runs and plugged 2 wickets off in 10 overs. New Zealand won the match by 107 runs completing the 3-0 series.
Her T20 debut was against England in 2005 at Hove. Browne gave a satisfactory performance, and New Zealand Women won by 9 runs.
The ICC Women’s World T20 started with a bang for New Zealand. They won their first match of the series against India on May 06th, 2010. Browne helped her team by scoring 24 runs in 17 balls and her bowling was average giving 11 runs in a single over. Browne’s team won their second match against Sri Lanka by 47 runs. She scored 20 runs with a strike rate of 166.66 and took the first wicket for her team knocking Chamari Athapaththu at 32/1.
Her match against Pakistan in ICC Women’s World T20 became proof of Browne’s bowling abilities. She single-handedly knocked off 4 wickets in her 4 overs and helped New Zealand win the match. She also got the title of player of the match for her outstanding performance.
The semi-final match against West Indies Women turned out to be in favour of Nicola. Her batting was satisfactory with a score of 15 runs and a strike rate of 136.36. She pulled the stumps out twice, for CP Jack at 64/2 and Deandra Dotting at 76/4. After winning back-to-back in the tournament, Nicola’s team lost to Australia in the finals by 3 runs. Nicola, however, was appreciated for maintaining a strike rate of 80.0 and taking two big wickets for New Zealand. Nicola was among the top three wicket-takers of the T20 championship with a total of 9 wickets under her name in the 5 innings.
Battle With Celiac Disease
She took the decision to retire from international cricket in 2011, not because of any loss of love for the sport, but because of her constant battle with the auto-immune disorder, celiac disease. She continuously felt weak and did not have enough energy to train every morning despite eating healthy potions. Between her career and health, she chose her health.
After a year-long break, Nicola made a comeback in ICC Women’s World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka. Browne’s T20 career finally came to an end in a match against Sri Lanka in 2014. She took the first wicket of Chamari Polgampola helping set momentum for her team. She knocked Shashikala Siriwardene out at 11.3 overs. New Zealand ultimately won the match by 6 wickets with 6 balls remaining.
Nicola Browne announced her retirement from all forms of cricket in January 2015. In her 14 years of cricketing career, she has played 125 One Day Internationals, 54 T20 Internationals, and 2 Test matches for New Zealand. She plans on contributing to the Women’s Cricket and the White Ferns using her knowledge, skills, and experience in the future.
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