When the moon aligns with the sun and the stars, it's amazing what you can achieve in the sport kingdom.
Just ask women's cricketer, Sophie Pyott, after she collected the Cath Atkins Batting Trophy for the best club aggregate (297 runs at 74.25) at the annual Hawke's Bay Cricket Association awards night last month.
"It was really exciting," said Pyott before catching a flight to England yesterday to play cricket there. "It's one of the most exciting seasons I've had with the bat."
The right hander, who turned 20 on Tuesday and opens the batting for the Havelock North women's team while coming in at first drop for the Bay senior women's representative side, is returning to play for St Lawrence and Highland Court CC in Canterbury, Kent, in her second Northern Hemisphere summer, until early September.
"I definitely think playing there helped me improve so much which opens me to that higher level of cricket where I'm up against county players and ex-England players and all that," she said, after helping St Lawrence claim the T20 bragging rights and finishing runners-up in the limited-overs format of the women's premier league in the south of England.
While there are up to five women's club teams in the Bay, they compete as eight-a-side units compared to the 11-a-side ones in Kent where she has had to toil harder for her runs in the middle order.
Pyott also found the seaming wickets abroad, compared to the bounce-and-carry variety here, more challenging although the ball wasn't as temperamental as it tended to be when it was new for batsmen higher up the order.
The former Havelock North High School pupil, who is working at an apple coolstore here and as an au pair (live-in nanny) in Kent, also attributes her mental fortitude to playing in male teams from her primary, intermediate and high school days.
The former lifeguard at Clive pools plays men's third and second club teams here, too, on Saturdays because women play on Fridays and Sundays.
"When I was in school, it opened me to the faster bowling."
She flatted with the St Lawrence team captain, Katherine Wickington, towards the end of last northern summer.
"I'm loving it," she said, relishing endless summers and the sound of leather on willow.
Pyott's desire to play in England came when she toured with the HNHS first XI boy's cricket team two years ago.
"That's how I got in touch with the club," she explained, revealing St Lawrence and Havelock North CC operate akin to sister clubs with an exchange of players two seasons ago.
Pyott is looking at either enrolling at the police college or attending university from early next year when she returns from Kent this time.
She said the Bay award was the ideal catalyst for her to try to make the most of cricket and also an endorsement that she was on the right path to honing her skills.
Olivia Mairs claimed the Cath Atkins Bowling Trophy club aggregate award with 11 wickets at 9.27 runs.
It was a double treat at the Bay women's rep level for Cate Pedersen, who walked off with the Megan Graham Batting Trophy for most runs after scoring 156 at 31.20 and then shared the glory of claiming the Cath Atkins Bowling Trophy for most scalps (8 at 18.38 runs an over) with Margot Scoular (8 at 13.88 runs an over).
Ruahine Motors Central Hawke's Bay allrounder Angus Schaw picked up the Harry Findlay Cup for the Hawke's Bay senior men's player of the year award.
Schaw also added the Don Martin Trophy for the best bowling performance for his 7-15 off 14.4 overs for the Pay Excellence Hawke's Bay senior men's representative team against Taranaki on January 12.
You Travel Taradale CC allrounder Dean Foxcroft etched his name on the Fulton Cup for the fastest century this summer when he carved up an unbeaten 100 off 53 balls for the Bay senior men against Bay of Plenty on October 20 last year.
The South Africa-born player, who also made a successful debut for the Central Districts Stags in the domestic arena, picked up the Budge Grant Memorial Trophy as the most promising under-23 cricketer.
White Ferns bowler Rosemary Mair claimed the Ransford Bat for the most promising under-21 cricketer.
Innovative Electrical Napier Technical Old Boys batsman Matt Edmondson was the MJF Shrimpton Cup winner for most runs (1392 runs at 53.54 — 824 for club and 568 for Bay senior men).
Club mate Jayden Lennox got on the list illustrious names on the Barry Mason Memorial Cup for claiming the most scalps last season (84 wickets at 12.52 — club 47 and 37 for Bay senior men).
■ Hugh Sail Memorial Cup Mercantile best & fairest: Those Guys.
■ Napier Twilight Cricket Shield overall winner: Rolled Bowled.
■ Ian and Beth Curley Challenge Cup women's championship: Havelock North CC, 20pts.
■ Div 3 championship: Eskview Rugby & Sports Club.
■ Wednesday Challenge Cup div 3 grade championship: Eskview Rugby & Sports Club.
■ Div 2b championship winner: Napier Old Boys' Marist Hobblers.
■ Div 2 round-robin winners: Napier Pirates Rugby & Sports Club.
■ Div 2 championship: Napier Pirates Rugby & Sports Club.
■ Div 1 T20 winners: Lindisfarne College.
■ Div 1 1st XI 2-day championship: Lindisfarne College.
■ RC MacInnes div 1 championship: Napier Boys' High School.
■ Kilbirnie Sports T20 Tournament winners: Central Hawke's Bay CC.
■ Premier National Knock Out Cup: Napier Tech Old Boys CC.
■ Premier 55-over championship: Havelock North CC, 46.8.
■ Murray McKearney Memorial Cup premier T20 championship: Napier Tech Old Boys CC.
■ MJF Shrimpton Memorial Cup premier championship limited over: Napier Tech Old Boys CC.
■ HBCA Challenge Cup premier championship: Napier Tech Old Boys CC, 128pts.
■ LD Carter Memorial Cup club pts: Cornwall CC, 327.60.
■ Premier men: Graeme McCarter (Cornwall CC) 199.76 points
■ Div 1: Luke Wright (Taradale CC) 137.26pts.
■ Div 2: Martin Roil (Taradale CC) 182.94pts.
■ John MacDermott Memorial Trophy most improved umpire: Garth Jones.
■ HBCA premier captains' umpires' award: Glen Walkin.
■ Cath Atkins Bowling Trophy club aggregate: Olivia Mairs 11 wkts @ 9.27.
■ Cath Atkins Batting Trophy club aggregate: Sophie Pyott 297 runs @ 74.25.
■ Megan Graham Batting Trophy (most runs for HB): Cate Pedersen 156 runs @ 31.20.
■ Cath Atkins Bowling Trophy (most wkts for HB): Cate Pedersen 8 @ 18.38 and Margot Scoular 8 @ 13.88.
■ Most promising wicketkeeper: Aimee Kay.
■ Maurice Jeffery Memorial Cup premier fielding team: Napier Tech Old Boys CC.
■ Alan Beck Memorial Cup individual fielding: Dom Thompson.
■ Fulton Cup fastest century: Dean Foxcroft, 100no off 53 balls, HB Senior Men v BOP 20-10-18.
■ Don Martin Trophy best performance bowling: Angus Schaw, 7 for 15 off 14.4 overs HB Senior Men v Taranaki, 12/01/2019.
■ MJF Shrimpton Cup batting (most runs): Matt Edmondson, 1392 runs @ 53.54, 824 club & 568 HB.
■ Barry Mason Memorial Cup bowling (most wkts): Jayden Lennox, 84 wktss @ 12.52, club 47 & 37 HB.
■ Villers Cup premier batting (best average): Brad Schmulian, 945 runs @ 59.06.
■ Hanlon Cup premier bowling (best average): William Clark, 37 wkts @ 11.84.
■ Mavericks player of the year: Callum Hewetson.
■ Senior women's players' player: Margot Scoular.
■ Senior men's players' player: Ben Stoyanoff.
■ Ransford Bat most promising U21: Rosemary Mair.
■ Budge Grant Memorial Trophy most promising U23: Dean Foxcroft.
■ Harry Findlay Cup Hawke's Bay senior men's player of the year: Angus Schaw.