Talented Sporting Youngsters Feature - Ava Midgley


Ava’s going great guns in her cricketing career so far

Ava Midgley in her Welsh stripAva Midgley is 16 years of age and has already represented Wales in girls’ cricket, played locally at the Ladies and Men’s games respectively for Cresselly and Hundleton, as well as enjoying the indoor league when her studies for her GCSE exams have allowed.
Ava represented Wales last season and is in the squad for the 2024 campaign, once her school exams are over - and she is eager to get restarted after doing so well in 2023!

Early start – in the family’s garden!

She started out in her cricket-mad family by playing in the back garden and then spent hours playing with the children of Hundleton cricketers as dad Stuart is a key player there as a big-hitting batsman, as well as playing football for Monkton Swifts and coaching Pennar Robins under 14’s, where her younger brother Elliott plays.
Mum Kelly is also a very keen player who plays cricket for Hundleton Seconds’ men’s team as well as Pembroke Dock and Neyland Ladies - and is described by Ava as her best supporter - and top taxi driver in taking her to all the matches she plays, not only locally but with the West Wales squad, plus training and playing for Wales!
Ave receiving her capThe family interest in sport is rounded off by her uncle, Ben Adams, who has captained Hundleton, plays football for Goodwick United - and is a very accomplished darts player knocking at the door of the top echelons in the game.

Loves other sports too

Ava has also shown an ability in other sports because she plays netball for Pembroke Ladies after just finishing her last game for the under 16s, where she has won the ‘Most Valuable Player’ award on more than one occasion. Then there’s hockey at Ysgol Harri Tudor, in Pembroke, where she plays up front - and has also dabbled a bit in football and rugby.
But it is cricket that ranks as her No 1 sport after starting out in the Hundleton Boys’ team at under nine level and also played later for Lamphey CP School after being encouraged by Mr Thomas, the head teacher.

More silverware for AvaRestart after Covid

But then Covid came along and so Ava missed playing until she joined Pembroke Dock and had two years in their ladies’ team alongside playing for the second string and receiving every encouragement from Peter Kingdom, the skipper, and Nick Daley.
She obviously impressed because after playing in a losing Dock team to Burton Ladies in the Clive Huxley Cup Final she was invited to join Cresselly and did so, learning a lot from the likes of Ffion Ashman, Lauren Davies, Lucy ‘Johnno’ Johnson and Megan Arthur.
Ava has also been a regular at West Wales level since she was 14, with Maddie Potter (Neyland) as the only other regular from this county - and claimed her first hat-trick playing for them in a match ‘Up the line’ - followed by another whilst playing for Hundleton Seconds and she finished up with figures of 3 for 14. On the batting front, Ava’s top score is 49 for West Wales at Port Talbot, where she missed out on a maiden 50 when she was run out!

Ava sweeps wellPlaying lots of cricket now

She also played one match of mixed cricket with West Wales at under 15 level and for the past two seasons has captained the West Wales’ girls’ teams on a number of occasions. Of course it demands great commitment, what with all the travel, but with support from Kelly and Stuart she loves being part of it.
Not content with that little lot, Ava also played for Carmarthen Wanderers and captained them to success in their local cup final - but the undoubted highlight came when she made her Welsh debut against Somerset at Chepstow, and grabbed two wickets.
Other highlights came when she was chosen by Martin Jones and Keri Chahal for the County Junior Bowling Award, the first female to do so, and played in the County Ladies’ team when they made their debut in the Welsh League and she helped them beat a very experienced Radar side at Cresselly.
She has since played in several other matches after training on a Monday evening in Neath and a couple of Saturdays per month at Sophia Gardens, where a few of her international games have been.

Ava in bowling action

And finally . . .

Last season saw Ava also play for Hundleton men in the final of the Alan Brown Cup at Whitland, alongside dad and younger brother and although she enjoyed the experience she readily admits they were hammered - and missed out on Hundleton winning the Ken Morris Cup Final at Narberth because she was already booked to play elsewhere - for Wales at Newport!
So now Ava’s start to the new campaign is on hold until 27th May, when the dreaded exams come to an end, but by then she will be raring to go - and in wishing her every success in those and her future cricket we at ‘PembrokeshireSport.co.uk’ do so safe in the knowledge that she is a very talented young lady and we are going to hear lots more of her cricketing exploits for many years to come!

Ava as part of her team