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Kelly Applebee retires from VicSpirit

Former Commonwealth Bank VicSpirit captain Kelly Applebee has announced her retirement from the side following yesterday’s 10-wicket loss to New South Wales.

Applebee, who played 116 WNCL matches and 59 Twenty20s for Victoria and represented the state more than any other player, will continue to play in the WBBL with the Melbourne Stars.

The right-handed batter made her debut in 2001 and was a member of Victoria’s title-winning one-day sides in 2003 and 2005 and the triumphant WT20 squad in 2010 and 2012.

She amassed 2894 runs for Victoria and passed fifty on 10 occasions with her highest score being 86.

Cricket Victoria CEO Tony Dodemaide praised Applebee for her contribution to Victorian cricket.

“Kelly has had a wonderful career for Victoria,” Dodemaide said.

“No one has represented the VicSpirit on more occasions than her and Kelly’s leadership and skills have been a constant over most of the past decade.

“She has been a brilliant role model to all in the VicSpirit squad and we look forward to watching her play for the Melbourne Stars this summer in the inaugural Women’s Big Bash League.”

After winning their first three matches, the VicSpirit finished in fourth place, with NSW and South Australia to play in Sunday’s Final.

Captain Meg Lanning was the leading run scorer with 307 runs in six matches, followed by Sarah Elliott on 273 and Danni Wyatt on 173.

Victoria’s attack was the led by spin bowlers with Kristen Beams and Elliott the leading wicket takers with seven dismissals, while Wyatt claimed six.

VicSpirit coach David Hemp said yesterday’s performance wasn’t a true reflection on the talent in the side.

“It was disappointing to finish that way but I still think there were a lot of positives to take out of the season,” Hemp said.

“Lots of individuals have shown a lot this year and we have plenty to build on for the future.”

Applebee will play available to play for the Melbourne Stars in the inaugural WBBL game on December 5 at the Junction Oval against the Brisbane Heat.

Entry is free with a double header between the two sides beginning at 10am.