Former PNG Skipper Kaia Arua Dies at 33

The heartbreaking news of the passing away of the former Papua New Guinea Women’s team skipper and all-rounder Kaia Arua has been a shocking loss to the cricket fraternity. The whole of Papua New Guinea is mourning the loss of one of their best players to play for their country at the international level.

Former PNG Skipper Kaia Arua Dies at 33
Former PNG Skipper Kaia Arua Dies at 33

“We are very sad to announce to you that our current player and most recent Lewas captain, Kaia Arua, passed away at Port Moresby General Hospital at midday today. Our sincere condolences and love go to her family, including Coach John Ovia and Lucy Ovia, who have both been long-serving staff here at Cricket PNG.” Cricket PNG CEO Richard Done expresses condolences to her loved ones.

Kaia Arua made her international debut for Papua New Guinea on 7th July 2018, in a T20I against Bangladesh in the ICC Women’s World T20 Qualifier 2018. She represented Papua New Guinea in 47 T20 Internationals and picked up 59 wickets at an average of 10.20, strike rate of 14.5, and an exceptional economy of 4.20 in 42 innings. Her tally of wickets includes three four-wicket hauls and a couple of five-wicket hauls for Papua New Guinea.

Her best performance with the ball came on 9th May 2019, when she returned with exceptional match figures (4-1-7-5) in her spell against Japan in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup East Asia Pacific Region Qualifier in 2019.

She took over the leadership duties for the first time for Papua New Guinea in the ICC Women’s World T20 Qualifier in 2018 in the Netherlands. She went on to lead Papua New Guinea for 39 matches and has a win percentage of 74 as the skipper of Papua New Guinea.

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“Kaia had a remarkable playing career with the Lewas and at the right time, we will be recognising that contribution. We wish to respect the family’s privacy at this difficult time, and we will release more details as approved by her family. In memory of Kaia Arua. Cricket PNG CEO appreciates Kaia Arua’s contribution for Papua New Guinea.

She is currently the leading wicket-taker (59 wickets) for Papua New Guinea in the T20I format. She last played for Papua New Guinea on 19th January 2024 against Fiji in the Women’s T20 Pacific Cup in Auckland.

(Quotes sourced from CricTracker)

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