In 2012, Madeline Penna - who had just become the first female from Mounties to be picked for a state team in close to 50 years - told the Champion she draws inspiration from cricket idol Ellyse Perry.
On Saturday, the Green Valley resident got the chance to bowl to her idol in her WBBL debut for the Melbourne Stars.
But it was in game No.2 where Penna, who was drafted in to the WBBL squad as an injury replacement, displayed her star qualities with a match turning spell of 4-20 against the Sydney Thunder on Sunday. The leg-spinner had home ground advantage as she bamboozled the strong Thunder line-up in front of a crowd of 606 people at Bankstown Oval.
The 19-year-old, who hit a match-winning 54 not out for club team Bankstown earlier in the season, snared the big scalps of Rachel Priest and fellow teen sensations Phoebe Litchfield and Westfields Sports student Hannah Darlington. Despite her heroics, the Thunder scraped home in the final over. It's been a big start to the summer for Penna. She also made her WNCL debut in September for the ACT Meteors after injury again opened the door. She is coming back from a knee injury herself which saw her play only six games last season.