The Women’s Big Bash League this week reaches its crescendo with UNSW alumnus Dr. Georgia Redmayne and student Carly Leeson’s teams in contention for the title.
Redmayne’s Brisbane Heat finished the regular season in third position and will meet fourth-placed Adelaide Strikers in the first of three finals, at Adelaide Oval, on Wednesday night.
The winner of that play-off will proceed to meet Leeson’s Melbourne Renegades, at the same venue on Thursday, to decide the last spot in Saturday’s Grand Final to be hosted by Perth Scorchers, at Optus Stadium.
Leeson, 23, is nearing the end of a Bachelor of Environmental Management degree at UNSW and will begin her Masters of Law next year.
Balancing the demands of a frontline doctor during the COVID-19 pandemic with her professional cricketing career, 27-year-old Redmayne has remained vital to Brisbane’s success over the past two seasons, with bat and gloves.
Redmayne - who completed her UNSW medical degree in 2018 with Distinction - has topped the club's batting charts both seasons, joining the Heat from the Perth Scorchers in 2020, a direct swap with fellow wicketkeeper and Australian star Beth Mooney.
Redmayne’s 436 runs this season followed 357 in 2020. She has taken 24 catches and 11 stumpings behind the stumps across both seasons, coming to a total of 35, more than any other wicketkeeper in the past two editions.
Her arrival followed back-to-back titles, and whilst she is yet to taste WBBL success in the Sunshine State, Redmayne was pivotal to Queensland’s first Women’s National Cricket League title last season with 531 runs at the extraordinary average of 132.75.
Last year, the Heat lost a thrilling semi-final against eventual champions Sydney Thunder.
Redmayne is a two-time winner of the UNSW Female Athlete of the Year, a Sporting Blue winner and was a Ben Lexcen Sports Scholar throughout her degree.
In her third season wearing red, all-rounder Leeson has played in seven of the Renegades’ eight wins as the club surged back into finals and a top-two finish.
Leeson was also part of the Renegades’ most recent Finals appearance in late 2019.
She is contracted with the ACT Meteors WNCL squad and has studied part time throughout her Environmental Management degree, balancing cricket and study.
Leeson is a Ben Lexcen Sports Scholar and was awarded a sporting Blue earlier this year.