White Fern Hannah Rowe is touring the UK for six weeks, juggling her studies with her passion for cricket.
The 24-year-old grew up on a dairy farm in Manawatū and graduated from Massey University with a Bachelor of Communication (majoring in journalism) in 2019.
She's studying again, this time completing her Postgraduate Diploma in Business, via distance.
Her passion for the sport began as a child, playing backyard cricket with her brothers.
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"Being under a New Zealand Cricket contract with the White Ferns means I am away from home a lot of the time, either at training camps or touring, and it makes it difficult to hold down a job. Being able to study via distance means I can upskill wherever I am in the world and prepare myself for a career after cricket," she says.
"The next 12 months are really important for the White Ferns. We have a 50-over home World Cup coming up early next year, and then have our first opportunity to compete in the 2022 Commonwealth Games, with women's cricket being included for the first time."
Rowe says it's been an honour to be part of the team over the past six years. She was first selected for the White Ferns at the age of 18 and managed to balance full-time study while training during her first year. However, as cricket became more professional over the years, she moved to part-time study.
"The flexibility of online study means I can chip away at my studies whenever I get the chance on tour. I've found that the lecturers are really understanding of athletes' lifestyles, allowing a certain level of flexibility if assignments are due around heavy travel or game days."
Rowe says touring in the time of Covid-19 bubbles and MIQ, she has found study to be a great distraction. "There's only so much Netflix you can watch!"
She's even found time to pick up some work in communications. "I've done some casual work for Massey over the last two years, mainly with the Academy of Sport, writing stories about Massey athletes and their journeys and achievements."
After cricket, Rowe hopes to work in business communications and public relations. "I am so engulfed in the sporting world at the moment so I'm not too sure what that looks like yet, but I am really passionate about paving a career path for myself outside of the game."