A national call-up has ruled a line through prized signing Belinda Vakarewa to lead out an inexperienced Greater Northern Raiders in their Kookaburra Cup debut.
The new side that has won five of its six games played with its last being washed out in Latrobe is set to play four division one 40-over fixtures starting from December 15.
But their big-time debut against Kingborough at the NTCA No.2 Ground that will include Hobart Hurricanes' rivals will be without the spearhead of the new attack.
Vakarewa will play three games for Australia A against India A instead on December 12, 14 and 16.
Raiders co-coach Darren Simmonds rang up Vakarewa on Thursday night over her availability for next week's training in Launceston.
"I did actually say to her that's a fair enough excuse," Simmonds laughed.
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The leading wicket-taker in the WBBL, who has played a single one-day international at 19, will be trialing for a spot in Australia's World T20 squad ahead of February.
The Raiders had won Vakarewa's services against five rival clubs since relocating from Sydney in a major coup.
The unavailability will be kept to just one game at this stage with the Raiders having a bye in the second round scheduled for December 22.
"She will be a significant loss for us for that first game," Simmonds said.
"Not only what she would have offered for us on the ground, but for the learning of our other players in our first Kookaburra Cup match."
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