Female Cricket interviews Mary Wambui – Kenya women’s national cricket team

Female Cricket interviews Mary Wambui - Kenya women's national cricket team

1. What drove you to cricket? Walk us through your initial cricket days?
I was just walking around the school when I saw some students playing cricket. Back then I used to refer it as a “funny game” not knowing it would be part of my life someday.

2. Any siblings? If yes, were they equally interested in Cricket? Was it hard/easy convincing your parents to let you play cricket?
Yes. I have four sisters who have no interest in sports. It wasn’t had to convince my parents to let me play cricket. I started showing interest in sports at a younger age. I was a gymnastic player before I started playing cricket and I remember representing my primary school up to a national level.  

3.Who were your cricket role model / inspiration whilst growing up?
My whole cricketing career I’ve had Steve Tikolo to look upto as both a mentor and an inspiration.

4. How did you cope up with your studies / education / other commitments along with cricket?
Actually it wasn’t easy balancing between school and cricket. I had to come up with a routine whereby I would study during the weekdays and enjoy cricket during the weekend which worked.

5. What is the current state of women’s cricket in Kenya? How much has it evolved since you started playing cricket?
Women cricket in Kenya has really changed from an amateur outfit to a full professional unit. We have moved from only waiting for ICC qualifying games and now have the national and county women leagues. We also moved from playing only in Africa to win the Dubai tournament in December last year.

6. How special was your debut match for Kenya? Were your nervous, excited, what was the feeling back then?
Having a call up to represent your country while still in school was something I never saw coming. The specialty in it was the fact that I was still schooling and wearing the national colors was a dream come true. I was both confused and happy.

Female Cricket interviews Mary Wambui - Kenya women's national cricket team

7. How happy were your family members and friends knowing that you are representing the national team?
They were happy and proud to have someone wear the national colors and represent the country.

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8. Where do you see yourself in coming 5 years? Where do you want to focus in order to improve the game?
I see myself being able to play against big teams like India and West Indies which has always been a dream. I’m an all-rounder so my focus is basically on everything.

9. What are you and the Kenyan Cricket doing in order to promote women’s cricket in the country?
We are scouting for new talents to feed the age-group league and also hold camps where seniors pass knowledge to youngsters.

10. What do you see as the biggest challenge in the Kenyan women’s cricket? What are the ways to tackle this challenge?
Very few fixtures – we need more tournaments to try out our skills. Having more matches can really help improve our skills. Everyday we learn something new.

11. Many Congratulations on the UAE T20 tournament win. How special was the victory? How was the response from fans and followers back home?
Thank you. The win was extra special because that was the first time we had participated in an international tournament that wasn’t from ICC. We had all the support we needed from home so the best we could do is win.

12. You were adjudged “Player of the Tournament” for an exceptional all-round performance. How special was this moment?
Standing out between almost 100 competing girls from 6 countries…was something I wasn’t expecting. Having an international feather added to my cap was just amazing. I was so proud of what I had achieved and I owe it to every person who has been with me through the whole process of making me the great player I am today…from coaches for the great motivation and sacrifices to family and friends for not giving up on me and most of all to God.

13. What is the selection criteria / pathway of players for the National team?
Youth league. Then clubs to clubs. We have the u-19 before getting a call up.

Female Cricket interviews Mary Wambui - Kenya women's national cricket team

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14. Is there a domestic cricket structure in place in order to churn out quality players for the national team?
Yes. County leagues between Nairobi and Nakuru.

15. Your views on Female Cricket as a platform?
I’m honored to be interviewed here. This initiative is the best thing that has ever happened to women’s cricket. Having people cover stories of female cricketers around the world is just something wonderful. Keep up the good work.

Vishal Yadav, Founder & CEO at Female Cricket

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