Maddy Darke signs with Sydney Sixers

Maddy Darke signs with Sydney Sixers

Maddy Darke in action. © Getty Images

Sydney Sixers have signed up Maddy Darke, a prodigious teenage talent, for the fifth season of Women's Big Bash League. The 18-year-old, considered one of the most talented young players in Australia at the moment, is fresh off a tour with Australia A, where she was called up as an injury replacement.

Drake, a wicket-keeper batter, was born and raised in Sydney and is earmarked for greater achievements. She is yet to play a WBBL or Women's National Cricket League game, but is already drawing comparisons to one of her heroes, fellow wicket-keeper, Alyssa Healy.

The right-hander, who is in her first year of a physiotherapy degree at the Australian Catholic University, is excited to join the Sixers squad and get the chance to rub shoulders with her heroes.

“I have been attending Sydney Sixers games since the WBBL started and have always looked up to players like Ellyse Perry and Alyssa Healy,” Darke said. “I know I am going to be able to learn a lot from everyone in the team but being a wicketkeeper and batter I am hoping I can just be a sponge around Midge (Healy).”

Ben Swayer, head coach of, is thrilled by the new signing and said Darke's talent was always obvious to him.

“I saw Maddy first-hand with the Australian under 19’s in South Africa in 2018 where she had a great tour and we have had our eye on her since,” Sawyer said. “It’s also been clear for a while through the Cricket NSW pathway that she is a talented cricketer with a good level of intelligence and maturity."

Darke joined Australia A's tour of England as an injury replacement, but believes she made the most of her opportunity, learning about her game and understanding the grind that comes with higher level cricket.

“I got the call up as an injury replacement and it was a big surprise, something that came completely out of the blue,” she explained. “One minute I was at home and the next minute I’m in England playing with people I have looked up to and who have played for Australia or been very close to that. It was the best tour ever for me.”

Although the tour of England did not end too well for the teenager - as she suffered a stress fracture in her foot - since her return to Australia, Darke has worked incredibly hard on her recovery with the Cricket New South Wales medical staff and is ready for the start of the WBBL.

Sydney Sixers will open their campaign against their local rivals, Sydney Thunder, at the North Sydney Oval on October 18.

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