The start of the Weber Women's Big Bash League this week can't come soon enough for Heat wicket-keeper Georgia Redmayne as she prepares to put a challenging year behind her.
Brisbane Heat batting and wicketkeeping weapon Georgia Redmayne quips she will need to refine her on-field celebrations this season.
Redmayne can joke about it now but it was no laughing matter when she ruptured her Achilles tendon while celebrating a caught-behind in November last year.
All kinds of random thoughts went through Redmayne's mind as she sustained the nasty injury during the Heat’s preliminary final loss to eventual champions Adelaide Strikers at Karen Rolton Oval in Adelaide.
“I was celebrating the wicket, it was a crucial wicket and an important time in the game so I had a lot of adrenaline flowing,” Redmayne, 29, recalls.
“I jumped up and then I went to run forward to celebrate with my teammates but it felt like someone had pegged a cricket ball right on the back of my leg.
“I thought someone had thrown the ball at me, but then I looked down and I had the ball in my glove.
“Then I thought the batter had swung around and hit me with the bat, but she was nowhere near me.
“I remember thinking that maybe one of the Adelaide crowd had thrown something at me.
“Maybe a hailstone had got me.
“Once I realised there was no external culprit, I knew I had done something pretty bad.
“I'm actually pretty nervous about celebrating on the field this summer, I want to take catches but I might have to be a bit more muted.
“It's hard because I am a very competitive person, it's going to be tricky to tone down the celebrations.”
It’s been a long and hard road back for Redmayne who says she has not set herself any lofty goals for the Heat this season.
Usually, she says, she would be nervous about how many runs she scores or how she keeps wicket, but after such an extended lay-off it’s all about simply getting back to play and enjoying her cricket.
“It's been strange to be sitting on the sidelines because previously I've only ever had to deal with finger injuries, which as a 'keeper you are quite used to,” Redmayne says.
“After the injury, it took a couple of months to start walking again.
“It took a long time learning how to walk and run properly again, it was hard because I basically lost all of my calf muscle in the time that I was off my feet."
Redmayne, the cousin of Socceroos goalkeeper Andrew Redmayne, has plenty of strings to her bow both on and off the field.
Away from cricket, she has worked as a Doctor in a two-year internship at The Tweed Hospital on the Queensland-NSW border.
She worked there prior and during the Covid-19 pandemic and, ironically, found it easier and less stressful after the pandemic had struck.
“I never thought I would be a professional cricketer, I thought I would go to university and get a job and cricket would be something I would do on the side,” Redmayne says.
“I finished school and got into medicine and then cricket came by surprise.
“I realised how much I loved cricket and from that point it was trying to do my best to balance both.
“I started working in the hospital in the year before the pandemic hit.
“In a strange way, it was actually a lot easier working there during Covid.
“It was a lot less busy because we had a lot less patients, because a lot of the surgeries were cancelled.”
While the medical field will be a pathway post-cricket, for the moment Redmayne is focused on making every post a winner for the Heat
Her love of cricket was forged growing up in Alstonville, in northern NSW, not far from where Aussie cricket legend Adam Gilchrist hails from in Lismore.
It is perhaps unsurprising ‘Gilly” was her early hero.
“Gilly was always my favourite player, he was the local hero and a left-hander and a wicketkeeper like me,” Redmayne said.
“I actually had a bit of coaching from Gilly's Dad, Stan.
“When I was young I played cricket with the boys.
"I don’t think I played in a women’s club competition until I had left school and I would have been about 18.”