White Ferns star all-rounder Amelia Kerr has withdrawn from the upcoming women's Big Bash League Twenty20 competition in Australia.
Kerr is continuing her break from cricket to prioritise mental health and wellbeing and as a result isn't on tour with New Zealand in England ,and has told the Brisbane Heat she still isn't ready to play.
"I am making really good progress and want to keep that going. It's a tough decision as I love representing the Brisbane Heat and can't speak highly enough of the support team and players," Kerr says.
"I will be following the tournament with great interest and cheering the team on from New Zealand."
Kerr has taken 31 wickets in 30 games for the Heat, at 20.16 per wicket and an economy rate of 5.80.
Heat coach Ashley Noffke backs Kerr’s call to opt out.
"We have been in regular contact with Melie, her family and wider support network and fully understand and support the decision she has made," Noffke says.
"She has been honest and brave with her decisions and the Heat will be ready and willing to assist her in the future, whether for a return to playing or simply as part of her Australian circle of friends and team-mates who will happily do what is best for her."
The women's Big Bash League starts next month, featuring Kerr's New Zealand teammates Sophie Devine, Suzie Bates and Amy Satterthwaite.