NZ cricket captain rated among world's sexiest
ATHLETES: American skier Lindsay Vonn, New Zealand's women's cricket captain Aimee Watkins, Czech tennis player Nicole Vaidisova
and Aussie swimmer Stephanie Rice have been rated among the world's 64 hottest female athletes.
Aimee Watkins is more accustomed to featuring on scoreboards so New Zealand's women's cricket captain admits surprise at being nominated as one of the world's sexiest sportswomen.
The 27-year-old from Taranaki has been rated by website Yahoo!Xtra as one of the world's 64 hottest female athletes, alongside American skier Lindsay Vonn, Aussie swimmer Stephanie Rice and Czech tennis player Nicole Vaidisova.
"I didn't know anything about it," Watkins said. "I've seen it now. Mum gave me a call and she was pretty excited and told me to go on and have a look. Since then I've had a bit of stick but, oh well. It's all a bit foreign to me."
Apart from deflecting verbal barbs from team-mates, Watkins has been planning for the Twenty20 World Cup, which starts on May 5 in the West Indies.
The White Ferns fly out on Thursday and Watkins was confident of her side's chances after a clean sweep of Australia in this year's Twenty20 Rosebowl series.
"To beat Aussie 5-0, we're pretty happy with our Twenty20 form and our plans. We're pretty clear on what we need to do."
New Zealand coach Gary Stead has taken an analytical approach to try to get a jump on the opposition.
"I think some women's teams are still finding their feet with Twenty20 because we don't play it as much as the men," Watkins said.
"Gary has done quite a bit of research and looked at stats and numbers and what kind of things correlate to winning. We know if we hit those marks then we're going to win games."
Watkins was preparing to play on low and slow pitches in the Caribbean and although that wasn't the team's preference, felt New Zealand were well equipped with four spinners.
"We've talked about the possibility of spinners opening the bowling. We'd prefer to have a little bit more pace in the wicket, to be honest.
"But we've done a lot of work on playing spin and in Twenty20, you can't get too caught up on who the bowler is because every ball is an opportunity to score a boundary."
Wellington boasts four players in the squad: Lucy Doolan, Sophie Devine, Sian Ruck and Liz Perry.
"Lucy just offers a totally different skill set to anyone else in our team. Her ability to access different areas of the field is going to be a valuable asset to us," Watkins said.
"And Soph has been in outstanding Twenty20 form and can hit the ball as hard as anyone."
After the World Cup Watkins will take up an English county contract with Devon.