As a newly-selected member of the BLACKCAPS Mitchell Santner is showcasing his cricketing skills at an international level.
A regular in the Northern Knights team, Santner is a left-arm orthodox spinner and middle order batsman, and made his First Class debut for the Northern Knights against Otago at just 19 years of age. Santner has also represented Hamilton in district association cricket.
Now 23, Santner is handy with both the bat and ball, and has played alongside and against some of the best cricketers in New Zealand. He has built his game around economic bowling and versatile batting.
In April 2015, Mitchell was selected to tour England with the BLACKCAPS as part of the One Day International and Twenty20 squads. He was the only uncapped player selected, and has joined a team that made the ICC Cricket World Cup Final for the first time earlier this year.
Santner played in two tour warm-up matches, and made his full international debut on the tour.
Although he is a bowling all-rounder, he scored 94 runs against Somerset in early May, getting his international career off to a flying start.
Santner is a proud Hamiltonian, and a former student of Hamilton Boys’ High School. He is studying mechanical engineering at the University of Waikato.
“I’m a pretty proud Hamiltonian so to represent my family and the city on the international stage means a lot,” he says. “Touring life is great,” says Santner.
“England is a great place to tour as it is the home of cricket – there is so much history here”.
Apart from his elevation to the national team, Santner says selection for the SKYCITY Northern Knights has been his greatest cricket achievement.
“I’m a born and bred Waikato man and to represent your home district means a lot. Walking out to play on Seddon Park is always a special privilege. It’s a great stadium to call your home ground.”
Santner’s success shows what can be achieved through dedication and hard work.
“Professional cricket really is a full time job,” he says. “As an all-rounder I train pretty hard physically when preparing for matches and then there are the extras like recovery and planning to do as well.”
Santner has a bright future in cricket, and Hamiltonians can look forward to him achieving at a high level in coming years.
Cliff Dickeson, Northern Districts High Performance Coach, is glowing in his praise of Santner.
“He is without doubt the hardest working spin bowler I have worked with,” Dickeson says.
“He is exceptionally well-organised in that he was studying for his university degree, spent five or six sessions a week on bowling and had separate batting sessions as well. I would suggest any athlete who spends this much time on developing their skills will achieve and deserve success.”