The Australian women’s cricket team is one of the nation’s most successful and admired sporting sides. However, before Meg Lanning’s XI lit up the Melbourne Cricket Ground in front of more than 86,000 adoring fans on 8 March 2020, a long innings of unsung grit, nous and passion was played. Clearing Boundaries traces the strong lineage of Australian females in cricket from the 19th century through to the watershed 2020 Women’s T20 World Cup. A curated collection of stories – covering memorable series, matches, innings, spells and moments – celebrates generations of pioneers across five distinct eras. Presenting over 220 images, it is the first illustrated book dedicated to Australian women’s cricket. Many historical photographs previously inaccessible to the public have been given a new life in Clearing Boundaries thanks to the Bradman Museum’s Holman Collection and players’ private collections donated to the Museum. Also featured are the statistical records of every woman to represent Australia on the cricket field and a foreword from one of the country’s greatest cricketers, Belinda Clark AO. Clearing Boundaries is the first ever coffee-table style book dedicated to women’s cricket, and the first literary update on the history of the women’s game in Australia for nearly 30 years. With remarkable tales and inspirational images, Clearing Boundaries shines a light on more than a century of unheralded cricket stories to help the women’s game take its rightful place in Australian sporting history.
Fiona Bollen has worked as a writer and editor in the sporting industry for more than a decade, combining her passion for sport and love of the English language. She was the editor of the National Rugby League’s Big League magazine and then Swoop, the women’s sport digital section of The Daily Telegraph. During that time, among covering the Women’s Big Bash League and other sports, Fiona toured England to cover the Australian women’s cricket team’s 2017 World Cup campaign. This exposed her to the under-appreciated but undeniable talents of Australia’s female athletes, and sparked a desire to showcase their inspiring stories. Fiona now freelances from her home in Lake Macquarie.
Matt Bonser is the creative and content lead at Perth-based publisher Churchill Press. He was responsible for the curation and design of The Doctor’s In: Memorable Moments at the WACA Ground (2017), its complementary exhibition at the Ground, and its companion publication The Doctor Declares: The End of an Era at the WACA Ground (2018); each produced with esteemed sports writer Ken Casellas. A cricket tragic – but with perhaps a better eye for detail than for the red ball – Matt collaborates with writers, curators, photographers and contributors to craft and present bespoke publications.
* Remarkable tales from the against-the-odds rise of women in a previously male-dominated arena
* A must-have for all cricket followers – filling a void of more than a century of unheralded cricket stories
* Celebrates arguably Australia’s most successful and popular sporting team
* An engaging collection of events that will be an inspiration to girls and women across Australia
* Accessible content, with over 200 photos and short easy-to-digest stories within five chapters
* Eye-catching imagery, from 19th-century black-and-white etchings to the vibrant energy of the record-breaking Word Cup in March 2020
* Foreword written by arguably Australia’s greatest female cricketer, Belinda Clark AO
* Statistical records of every woman to represent the nation on the cricket field
* An initiative of the Bradman Foundation & Museum, with the full support of Cricket Australia
* Proceeds go to the Bradman Foundation & Museum to support their ongoing work
* Launched at the Sydney Cricket Ground Bradman Museum with former Australian cricketer and current Channel 7 commentator Lisa Sthalekar joined by former Australian player/Channel 7 commentator Mel Jones and former Australian player Julia Price on 25 November (The event was timed to coincide with the start of the popular, high-rating Womens Big Bash League Twenty20 finals that night.)
* The launch event was followed by a Jim Wilson interview of Lisa Sthalekar on 2GB drive (audience of up to 600,000 according to the latest survey).
* That evening, during the dual-coverage Fox Sport/ 7Mate live coverage of the semi-final, Lisa spoke on-air about the book with fellow commentator Mel Jones for two minutes , with the book held in view of the camera (see attached image). That telecast had 340,000 viewers, according to the official ratings.
* Lisa and Mel have a combined Twitter audience of more than 100,000 followers.
* The SCG gave the event strong coverage and advises that its social media has a reach of 100,000.
* Saturday 28 November – articles in major Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane newspapers – "The Saturday Age", "Sydney Morning Herald" and "Brisbane Times" with two photographs, one in colour, by senior writer and acting "Age" sports editor Greg Baum.
* Gideon Haigh (without doubt, the worlds most-acclaimed, authoritative and prolific cricket author (as well as a high-profile freelance and guest ABC commentator) praised the book during a lengthy discussion on it during his podcast with Peter Lalor. Gideon also advises he plans a feature article on the book for "The Cricketer" magazine.
* Geoff Lemon has interviewed "Clearing Boundaries" author Fiona Bollen for his podcast "The Final Word", which is the cricket podcast with the biggest audience in Australia. His podcast co-presenter Adam Collins, who also writes for "Wisden" (the cricketers bible) has spoken with Wally Edwards to organise an interview when Adam gets back to Australia from London to cover the Australian 2020-2021 Australian international cricket season.
* A number of specialist womens cricket Tweeters with small but passionate follower bases (eg LadiesWhoLegspin, 10,600 followers) mentioned the book multiple times.
* The ABC Radio 774 Virginia Trioli book chat segment has scheduled Bradman Museum executive director Rina Hore to discuss the book live on air on 14 December.
* ABC TV Breakfast sports presenter Paul Kennedy has advised that he will discuss the book on air soon.