Sydney Thunder skipper Alex Blackwell has revealed she has been playing through the pain of a hand injury which she initially feared could rub her out for the Women's Big Bash League.
Blackwell has shown great fortitude to keep the injury under wraps for the past month-and-a-half after copping friendly fire from NSW teammate Alyssa Healy during this year's Women's National Cricket League.
After Healy thundered the ball back down the wicket, it struck Blackwell who was standing at the non-striker's end.
Her initial thought was she was "in trouble" however she was cleared of a break and only suffered bone bruising.
She admitted it sometimes hurt to bat and was being aided by a special contoured grip which is designed to keep the batter's hand in place.
"It is an important place but when I hit the middle of the bat, it's no problem, it's when I half hit them that it hurts - that vibration through the bat," Blackwell said.
"I use a special device on my bat, which I've been using for a while, a squirrel grip.
"It's a special grip that's designed to stop the rotations of the bat on impact so I'm thinking I've got all I need to get through this small issue.
"It's just a matter of pushing through it and some strapping."
She showed little sign of being hindered in her last-start 81 not out against the Perth Scorchers and has her side firing ahead of their top-of-the-table WBBL clash with the Sydney Sixers on Saturday.
The Sixers can leapfrog their derby rivals into top spot with victory at the SCG.
They boast an explosive top order, headed by skipper Ellyse Perry, who is steaming towards setting a competition record for most runs.
After piling on 370 in eight matches, she has Meg Lanning's record of 502 runs from last year's competition in her sights.
"It's been nice to be consistent. I probably have to have a bit more impact at different times in terms of strike rate," Perry said.
"It's been nice to be at the top and bat around people like Alyssa and Ashley (Gardner) and Erin Burns, who I think has been absolutely wonderful for us this season."