Year 12 student Ella Mills had an Easter holiday break that she will never forget. Our star cricketer was selected for an Under 18 Women’s Tour of Sri Lanka, organised by the Western Australian Cricket Association (WACA).
The tour was marred by the Easter Sunday bombings in Colombo that took the lives of so many innocent people. Fortunately, the squad was two hours away in the neighbouring city of Galle. The attacks caused the tour to be cut short for the safety of the girls and the accompanying staff.
In the time that Ella did have on tour, she participated in three games against teams comprised of Sri Lankan state and national representatives. She also had the opportunity to offer service in an orphanage where the squad played badminton and cricket with the children. Later she participated in cricket coaching clinics, teaching a Sri Lankan girls’ team some cricket skills.
The tour helped Ella to decide on her future in cricket. She realised that she really didn’t enjoy the pressure that goes along with touring and international competition. However, she does love the game and she does want to be involved in growing the participation of women in cricket.
Currently, Ella coaches the Santa Maria College Years 7/8 cricket team. Ella makes a point of identifying talent and helping girls to be noticed by the WACA talent scouts. She is particularly impressed by fellow boarder, Stella Wessels from Year 7.
The popularity of the sport in the College is growing quickly and our girls are doing well. Indiana Squires is another student competing at state level. She represents WA in the Under 15 girls’ squad.
When asked what she loves about cricket, Ella said, “You learn about other people. You have six hours to talk to teammates and opposition and so team spirit is really strong. I also love watching the skills of the experienced players and figuring out how to use them in my own game. It’s fun. In cricket, there are so many ways you can be celebrated and celebrate others; getting a six, getting someone out, taking a catch. There are always ways you can be contributing.”