Whanganui allrounder Jess Watkin is knocking on the door to re-enter the White Ferns team to play Australia next month.
The Central Hinds Player of the Year and T20 co-captain has spent the last few days at Winter Camp with the White Ferns in Mt Maunganui and awaits the naming of the team to travel to Australia in two weeks’ time.
Watkin is no stranger to White Fern duties, although the last time she enjoyed time in the national women’s side was in 2018.
New Zealand Cricket, however, have kept her close offering a development contract when that was first introduced last season and again this year, both of which Watkin signed.
Obviously selectors have taken note of Watkin’s season last summer when she was named Hinds Player of the Year, an honour she also enjoyed in 2017.
Since returning home from Geraldine, where she went to support her partner in a new job venture, Watkin has worked tirelessly toward selection back into the White Ferns fold.
“My partner’s job didn’t quite work out down South because of the Covid-19 lockdown, so we came back to Whanganui in June,” Watkin said.
“I didn’t have a job to come back to although I did manage to get some coaching for Manawatu Cricket during the school holidays.”
During this time Watkin reunited with coach of old Dilan Raj who is now employed by Manawatu Cricket.
“I have been pretty much training all the time doing drills and working with Dilan in Palmerston North. My main aim was to get ready for the new season and perhaps even get back into the White Ferns.
“I was so surprised and pleased to get the call to go to the Winter Camp for the White Ferns. Not everyone in the team is here yet and the team to go to Australia won’t be named until next week.
“I think the tour was only confirmed a few days ago and with Covid-19 restrictions it will mean two weeks in isolation once the team gets to Australia, two weeks of games including three ODIs and three T20 matches, followed by two weeks isolation when the team gets back home – six weeks for six games,” Watkin said.
If the 22-year-old is fortunate enough to be named in the White Ferns touring team next week, Watkin is keen to be available for the Hinds when time allows.