Sydney Thunder train at Bradman Oval

If you drove past Bradman Oval this week and thought you saw some of Australia’s best cricketers out on the field, you’re eyes aren’t tricking you.

The women’s Sydney Thunder team visited the Highlands this week for a pre-season camp.

A Thunder spokesman said much of the camp had focused on centre wicket work.

From Monday to Wednesday the team battled the cold Highlands weather ahead of the WBBL season which starts this weekend.

The Thunder will kick off its campaign with a double header this weekend.

The team includes Australian players Rachael Haynes and Alex Blackwell along with West Indian captain Stafanie Taylor.

She was part of the club’s championship winning season in WBBL 01 and has taken 12 wickets and scored 661 runs at the club.

‘I’m really excited to back at the Thunder. I’m hoping this year I can score my first Twenty20 century,’ said Stafanie”

Alex Blackwell said it was always good to at Bradman Oval. 

“It feels like we are very focused with less distraction and to be in the home of cricket to kick-start our campaign is quite appropriate.” she said.

“We’ve had all the facilities we’ve needed and we always feel really welcomed here.”

Coach Joanne Broadbent said it was going to be a hard team to pick.

“There’s a really good balance of local, international and young players so no matter which way we go I’m sure we will have a strong team of 11,” she said.

Indian player Harmanpreet Kaur has also signed with the Thunder for two more seasons.

As a member of the Indian Women’s World Cup squad, her score of 171 not out in the semi-final against Australia cemented India’s spot in the final.

On Saturday, Sydney will face the Melbourne Renegades at North Sydney Oval before returning to the venue on Sunday for a grudge match against Sydney rivals the Sixers.

Bradman Foundation executive director Rina Hore said it had been a welcome surprise for visitors.

“It’s a highlight for museum visitors to come to the museum and see the Thunder girls,” she said.

“Jo Broadbent (Thunder coach) think it’s a fantastic environment to have a pre-season camp here.”

Hore said the team loved coming down to train at Bradman and the Thunder and Bradman Foundation had worked together to create a program that appealed to all the players.