Not bad for a hard-deck hack.

At 22, former Trafalgar cricketer Nicole Faltum became the youngest captain in the Women’s Big Bash League (WBBL) following official announcements that the Gippslander will head the Melbourne Stars for the upcoming WBBL|08 season.

If you don’t already know the name Nicole Faltum, you soon will.

Faltum has come a long way since playing junior cricket with the boys teams at Trafalgar Cricket Club, signing with the Melbourne Stars in 2017, representing Victoria in the Women’s National Cricket League and being named in the Australia A squad for its series against England A earlier this year.

Last week, she added another dot point to her resume, becoming the fifth player to lead the Melbourne Stars after Meg Lanning, Kristen Beams, Elyse Villani and Erin Osborne.

In light of the announcement and the WBBL Moe Festival next month, Faltum returned home, sharing the news with students from Moe South Street Primary School, Latrobe Valley mayor Kellie O’Callaghan, and former primary school teacher John Duck.

Nicole Faltum
Nicole Faltum and Latrobe Valley mayor Kellie O’Callaghan following the official announcement that the former Trafalga cricketer is to captain the Melbourne Stars in the upcoming WBBL season. Photos: Zoe Askew

While cricket bats and balls preoccupied Moe’s youngest learners, Faltum took the opportunity to shed light on the impending WBBL season and her captaincy of the Melbourne Stars.

“It is such an honour to be able to captain the Melbourne Stars; I’m so stoked,” Faltum said.

“I’m pretty nervous if I’m being honest, but it’s really exciting.

“Never really thought that it (captaining) was something that I would do, it was never really something I wanted to do, but I just found myself doing it more and more.

“I love leading, and leadership is quite important to me, so to be able to do that, especially for the Melbourne Stars, is incredible; it’s so cool.

“Especially coming from Traf, I just think that’s really special.”

Nicole Faltum
Where it all started: New Melbourne Stars captain Nicole Faltum grew up playing for Trafalgar Cricket Club.

Trafalgar Cricket Club has a special place in Faltum’s heart, with the new Melbourne Star captain accrediting her success to the club and former coaches Sean Cameron and Christian Burgess.

“I owe a big thank you to Traf; they have been amazing,” Faltum said.

“Also, to my old coaches Sean Cameron and Burgo, I wouldn’t be where I am without those two.”

Cooper Burgess, son of Christian, was once described as the best bowler Faltum had kept to, but has since lost that place, it would seem.

“He is definitely one of the funniest bowlers I have ever kept to,” Faltum said, laughing.

“We used to call him the frog in the blender.”

Women’s cricket continues to evolve, having grown exponentially in the past five years.
With Gippslanders Nicole Faltum captaining the Melbourne Stars and Sophie Molineux captaining rival team Melbourne Renegades, Faltum is hopeful for an even brighter future for women in cricket, especially in regional areas.

Nicole Faltum
Faltum lends a hand to Gippsland’s next generation of cricketers.

Faltum’s passion for cricket and the love of her hometown only adds to her excitement for the first-time arrival of the WBBL in Gippsland with the WBBL Moe Festival at Ted Summerton Reserve across Saturday, November 19 and Sunday, November 20.

“Melbourne areas and metropolitan areas get exposed to it (women’s cricket) so much more than country regions,” Faltum said.

“So to come back here and play in a region where young boys and girls don’t get exposed to lots of female sport, I think, is so important.

“Not only for the young girls to be able to watch it, but for the young boys to watch females play professional sport, here in Moe, is going to be so cool.”