Coach Tom Anderson believes Newcastle's bowling will be key to success as the Blasters target their first Country NSW Women's T20 Bash crown at Sydney's Cricket Central on Tuesday.
The Blasters are playing in the representative final for the first time after bowing out at the semi-finals stage in previous attempts.
This year, as unbeaten northern pool winners at Tuggerah on the Central Coast this month, they booked a straight-out Bash showdown with southern conference heavyweights Riverina.
"I think our batting takes care of itself because we bat quite deep, and even the younger girls are quite good with the bat," Anderson said.
"Tara French is a Basil Sellers scholar winner, and she's bowling fast. One of the spells she bowled at the Central Coast was as fast as I've seen a girl bowl.
"Ally McGrath is back. She's fantastic. Ellyse Perry turned to me one day when we were doing a Sixers academy and said Ally McGrath is as close as I've seen to someone who bowls like me. That was a few years ago now but that was a fair wrap.
"We've got good spinners in the likes of Sienna Eve, who is also a Basil Sellers scholar and was probably unlucky this year not to get a contract with the Sixers or the Thunder."
The Blasters also have a deeper squad than in the past with selectors naming 15 players for the Bash campaign, including plenty of rising talent.
Spin bowler Jaclyn Vickery and wicket-keeper/batter Laura Knipe are unavailable, the former due to work commitments while the latter is in camp with the Junior Matildas in Canberra.
Captain and top-order batter Kirsten Smith has been cleared to play after nursing a back complaint since the northern pool carnival.
"I'm so excited, and the whole team is, to finally be able to make it and represent Newcastle in the Country Bash final is huge for our region," Smith said.
"There's been a lot of work put into that junior space particularly, and I think we're finally reaping the rewards with the calibre of players coming through.
"Riverina have finals experience, which we all know is important, whereas we have only reached the semi-final and unfortunately dropped out a couple of times. But we've also learnt a lot from that."
The final will be played on Tuesday morning, followed by a WBBL clash between Sydney Thunder and Adelaide Strikers.
"What an opportunity for any player, but particularly country cricketers who normally wouldn't have been able to watch that game live," Smith said.
"It just reinforces the if she can see it, she can be it mentality, and gets them excited about why they play."
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