Rachael Haynes excited about the semifinal clash against Brisbane Heat

Sydney Thunder skipper Rachael Haynes. © Getty Images

Sydney Sixers skipper Rachael Haynes believes that their best in this season of Women’s Big Bash League is yet to come. Speaking ahead of the semifinal fixture against Brisbane Heat, Haynes said that they are excited about playing in the knockouts after missing out last year.

“For us, it’s really nice to see players perform under pressure and get to the semifinals. Obviously, we were pretty devastated last year. We are going to have an opportunity to play in the semis and definitely excited about it,” Haynes told the reporters on Monday (November 23).

“Now that we have got another opportunity to play in the semifinals, I think it’s another good experience for the whole playing group. Playing big games under pressure, that’s the reason why you play and trying to prepare really well. So, we are looking forward to it.”

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The 33-year-old said that she enjoyed leading a young group of players and the challenges that comes with it.

“Sometimes you can do things that are amazing, and sometimes things happen, and you wonder why that happened. That’s probably been a big difference, closing that gap between the very best and the other point of the spectrum.”

Haynes seems to be thrilled to watch the younger players perform under pressure situations for the Thunder. “I think we saw glimpses of what they are capable of, last year. Players like Hannah Darlington, Phoebe Litchfield, they have just continued to grow and develop. It’s really exciting for the future of the club.”

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On playing alongside England captain Heather Knight, Haynes said that the allrounder had been a good influence on the younger players in the squad.

“She (Knight) is really tenacious. She obviously leads England really well. I think she has done the same here. She has brought the same energy and enthusiasm and obviously the same level of professionalism as well.”

While speaking about taking on the defending champions, Haynes said that the Heat have the experience of playing finals and that they have players who can take the game away in a couple of overs. However, she is confident that they could get past the semifinal hurdle this time.

“I think the good thing about T20 cricket is, on any day it can be your moment, and sometimes, it takes one or two players to change the course of the game. Yeah, they are a dangerous team, but we match up against them really well. So, yeah, looking forward to the challenge,” Haynes concluded.

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