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Chloe Abel: The nursing student from Tasmania who helped Scotland qualify for first T20 World Cup

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After playing for Hobart Hurricanes in Australia’s Women’s Big Bash League as a teenager, Chloe Abel moved to the UK to join Middlesex last year and was subsequently called up by Scotland. 

She made her international debut against Italy last September and earlier this month she was part of the squad that helped Scotland reach their first T20 Women’s World Cup by beating Ireland in the semi-finals of the qualifying tournament. 

Telegraph Sport gets to know the 20-year-old bowler ahead of the global tournament in Bangladesh in October.

How significant is Scotland qualifying for the T20 World Cup for the first time?

It is an amazing achievement for everyone involved – coaches, staff, players, past players… Scotland have had challenges in their female programme in the last three or four global qualifications and have never come out on top. To play the way we did against Ireland, a team we play a lot in competitive games, and to seal it with a convincing win was unbelievable. It still hasn’t sunk in. It means the world to everybody.

The celebrations were a little delayed by people getting drug tested, but we then all sang Flower of Scotland. That feeling did not replicate anything I’ve experienced so far in my career.

Talk us through your journey from growing up in Australia to representing Scotland

I’m from Hobart, Tasmania, and I came over to the UK at the start of last season after not getting another contract with the professional team there. I wanted to play more cricket and have new coaches and team-mates. I contacted Kari Carswell at Middlesex and she was also involved with Scotland. After some good performances [for Middlesex] I went up to Edinburgh to play – I qualify because my mum was born in Glasgow.

Describe yourself in three words

Enthusiastic: I look at life with a positive outlook and see the light at the end of the tunnel. Sporty: I grew up playing a lot of sport. Caring: I’m doing a bachelor of nursing degree I’ve nearly finished back home. I want to help people.

Have you had to put it on hold while you are in the UK?

I’m in the last year of my four-year degree and I’ve been able to do the majority of the non-practical elements from here. Then I’ll finish it in Tasmania after the World Cup. It’s a busy year.

If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

Teleportation. Just to think and then be in the country you want to be in rather than have to travel for two days to get back home.

Who is the one person you would like to meet, dead or alive?

Michael Phelps. I’ve listened to a lot of his podcasts and watched documentaries, so his dedication to sport and his pure hard work to get where he did is a massive reminder to myself that things do not come easy and how putting the hard work in means you can get rewards. He would be a really interesting person to have conversations with.

What is your worst habit?

Drinking too much tea! I love tea.

If you could switch lives with anyone in the world for a day, who would it be?

I wouldn’t mind being Tiger Woods in the final round of the Masters. That would be pretty cool.

What is your favourite childhood memory?

Me and my family have been lucky to do a lot of travelling and to go on holiday with my best friend’s family. We created a lot of memories together and they have definitely stuck in my brain. I loved skiing and we also did great trips to Greece and Croatia.

What is your favourite WhatsApp group?

We have one called Bomb Squad with Scotland players who have hit sixes. I’m one of the founding members from last year so it’s a pretty cool group to be in.

What song gets you on the dancefloor?

Any Abba song would have me up and ready to go. I’ve just booked tickets for Voyage. It’s meant to be amazing.

What is your dream three-course meal and dinner guests?

It would be Japanese cuisine, I love that, and my guests would be Woods, Roger Federer, Serena Williams and Rory McIlroy.

I love golf. My handicap at the moment is 11.5 and I’m hoping to get it lower. Kathryn Bryce [Scotland captain] still beats me, which is annoying. I don’t watch that much tennis but

Serena Williams did so many amazing things for gender equality it would be really interesting to speak to her.

What is the best advice you have ever received?

When I signed my first official contract at 17, my mum told me not to put all my eggs in one basket, which is why I started my degree after I left school. Cricket is such a difficult game, you don’t know what is going to happen and you can have more failures than successes in your career. That balance is really important. Also, never say no to a great opportunity because you never know where that might go.

What is the best concert you have been to?

We have Falls Festival back home, which is like a mini Glastonbury, and Lewis Capaldi was incredible the last time I was there.

If you had a time machine, would you go back in time or go to the future?

Definitely back. You don’t want to ruin the surprise of the future. Going back to the semi-final in the World Cup qualifier would be pretty fun. Back to the winning moment.

Do you have any hidden talents?

I can play the guitar. That came out when we qualified for the World Cup. We have some really good singers and musical talent in the team so we had jamming sessions on tour.

What is your biggest non-sporting achievement?

How I’ve been able to balance cricket and my nursing degree, and all the people I’ve been able to help already on my rotations, which is something pretty special to me. It is just being able to help as many people as I can.

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