Medico gives her heart to ACT cause
Sarah Hungerford combines work as a doctor with playing cricket for the ACT Meteors. Photo: Karleen Minney
She's training to be a cardiologist, so it is only natural Sara Hungerford will remain calm as the ACT Meteors look to keep their title aspirations alive.
While they are out of the running in the one-day competition, the Meteors have an outside chance to claim a berth in the final of the Twenty20 Cup.
To move into second place, the Meteors need to win both of their two T20 games with Western Fury on Friday and Sunday in the last round at Queanbeyan's Freebody Oval and hope VicSpirit drops a game to ladder leaders the NSW Breakers.
The scenario pales in comparison with Hungerford's experience as a doctor at St Vincent's Hospital in inner Sydney, where she has dealt with life and death situations while working in its emergency ward.
''It's very hard for me to take a game of cricket too seriously with my job being quite serious,'' Hungerford said.
''I enjoy the challenge and competitiveness, but I never feel too pressured because I find work scenarios are a little bit more stressful than a game of cricket.
''It's always a bit of a juggle, but they're two things I really love doing. When you have a passion for both, it works.
''It can be a bit of a rostering nightmare, but Cricket ACT are very understanding of athletes having their work-life balance.''
The 26-year-old, who is now in a middle management position as a medical registrar, worked in Britain last year as a cardiology trainee as part of becoming a cardiologist, which involves all internal medicine focused on the heart and cardiovascular system.
Hungerford has balanced her medical duties with her Meteors commitments for the past couple of seasons, while also playing for English club Surrey during her stint overseas.
Constant rain limited her appearances in county cricket, but the middle-order batter had the honour of using the locker of England batsman Kevin Pietersen during a game at the historic venue the Oval.
Albeit, for a limited stint.
''I made a duck and lasted half a dozen balls, which was pretty funny because a lot of my Australian friends had come along to the game,'' she said.
''There was so much rain I played two out of about 20 games, but it was a great experience.''
The Meteors are a solitary point behind the second-placed Spirit on the Twenty20 table, but the Fury also has plenty of motivation given it is a point adrift of the ACT.
The first game is at Freebody Oval on Friday at 3pm, with a 50-over match and another Twenty20 game to be played on Saturday and Sunday respectively.
ACT Meteors v Western Fury at Freebody Oval, Queanbeyan, on Friday at 3pm.