Whether she’s clearing the boundary line with a huge six or setting up a goal with a blistering cross, Annabel Martin is always in the thick of the action.
At just 16, the Maribyrnong resident has already travelled the globe, pulling on the green and gold to represent Australia at junior level in cricket and soccer.
After originally playing Australian Rules Football, Martin made the switch to soccer a few years ago and hasn’t looked back. During that time she’s continued to focus, and succeed, on her cricket.
She attends specialised sports school Maribyrnong College which she said had been fantastic in helping her reach her sporting goals.
“I am going to play both sports for as long as possible,” Martin said. “They have a bit of overlap, which is pretty difficult, but I always try to work something out.”
Martin’s junior cricket highlights include multiple appearances in Victorian state sides, earning selection in the team of the tournament at the 2013 national championships and making the Cricket Australia junior development squad.
In soccer, a back injury may have delayed her first appearance for her country but it didn’t keep the rising star down for long.
After a standout performance at the under-17 national championships last year, Martin was selected in the Young Matildas national squad.
“They found a stress fracture in my back so I didn’t get to go away with that team last year,” Martin said.
Martin was this year selected to go to Vietnam for the Asian Football Federation Championships. She competed in the open-age women’s event earlier this year. She is now aiming to be selected for Australia in the under-19 Asian Football Championships, to be held later this year.
A right-back in soccer and a batsman-wicketkeeper in cricket, it’s only natural that Martin draws comparisons with one of Australia’s most talented athletes, Ellyse Perry.
The Sydney woman plays for Australia in both cricket and soccer, a feat Martin hopes to emulate.
“Whenever people ask what sport I play and I say soccer and cricket, they always say, so are you the next Ellyse Perry?” she said.
“She has done what I want to do and that’s probably my major goal … to do something like that and do it so well.”
For her outstanding sporting achievements, Martin has been named as a monthly nominee for the Don Deeble Rising Star award.
The award is run by the Sunshine Western Region Sports Club in conjunction with Star Weekly.
Martin will receive $1000 donated by the Yarraville Club Cricket Club and other prizes to assist in her future sporting goals.
The Don Deeble Rising Star award recognises young athletes in the western suburbs who have achieved outstanding results at a state and national level.
To nominate someone for the Don Deeble Rising Star Award email firstname.lastname@example.org