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News

Ten wickets in two days: Amelia Kerr makes big impact on her return

The legspinner returned to competitive cricket for the first since April having taken time to manage her mental health

Amelia Kerr celebrates a wicket, Australia v New Zealand, 3rd women's T20I, Allan Border Field, September 30, 2020

Amelia Kerr has taken time away from the game over the last six months  •  Getty Images

New Zealand allrounder Amelia Kerr has made a prolific return to action, after taking time away from the game to manage her mental health, with consecutive five-wicket hauls over the weekend.
Legspinner Kerr claimed 5 for 40 and 5 for 36 for Wellington in the Hallyburton Johnstone Shield in what was her first competitive cricket since the ODI series against Australia in April.
Since then she had opted out of the tour of England and also made herself unavailable for the WBBL where she would have played for Brisbane Heat.
Having revealed she had been dealing with her mental health since last year, the continued need for biosecure restrictions and quarantine on return to New Zealand played a key part in Kerr's decision to remain at home over the winter. She also broke her finger in May which prevented her from bowling for three months. She has credited working with her psychologist as a vital piece of the process.
"It has been a saviour for me," she told stuff.co.nz. "I think it's a very scary thing going to see someone professionally about your mental health. You're going to talk to a stranger about things that are uncomfortable to talk about. For me, it's been the best thing possible to help me to where I am."
On the field over the weekend she helped Wellington to back-to-back victories. In the first game she claimed the key wicket of Amy Satterthwaite for 87 and in the second followed her haul with a top score of 41 in a tight run chase.
Kerr, who made her international debut aged 16 and has played 82 times, will be a vital part of New Zealand's squad for the ODI World Cup which they host next March. "I can't wait to challenge ourselves and go against the best in the world and put on a show and express our skills," she said. "It's a dream to be able to play a World Cup at home."