On January 12, Cricket Australia announced a 15-member squad for the Women’s Ashes that will be played Down Under from January 20. The multi-format series will start with a three-match T20I tournament followed by a one-off Test and end with a three-match ODI competition. A team gets two points for a win in a T20I/ODI. Four points are allocated to the winner of the Test and in case of a draw the points are shared. The team that has the maximum points at the end of the Ashes will win/retain the urn.
Out of the 15 members that were pricked by Cricket Australia on Wednesday, 14 were the usual suspects, with Alana King being the only new entrant in the Australian squad. King is a right-arm leg spinner, who plays for Western Australia at the domestic level. Recently, she was a part of Perth Scorchers in the Women’s Big Bash League and was impressive with the ball. The wily leg spinner scalped 16 wickets in 14 innings and was the fifth-highest wicket-taker in the tournament. She also had an economy of under six, which indicates her control and consistency with the ball.
Australia announced a 15-member squad for the seven-game women’s Ashes series, uncapped Alana King made a surprise entry.
What do you think of this Australian squad? 🤔#AshesTest #Ashes pic.twitter.com/PZG9IrPcUt
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) January 12, 2022
Darcie Brown, Nicola Carey, Hannah Darlington, Ashleigh Gardner, Rachael Haynes (VC), Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Alana King, Meg Lanning (C), Tahlia McGrath, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Tayla Vlaeminck
Matthew Mott will be the head coach of the team and will have Shelley Nitschke and Ben Sawyer as his assistants.
Commenting on the squad selection, Australia’s national selector, Shawn Flegler, said, “This was a tough selection process with so many players coming off strong WBBL tournaments, but we’re confident we’ve selected a balanced, all-round squad with players who can perform across all three formats.”
Australia last played a bilateral series against India in September – October last year. Australia’s vice-captain Rachael Haynes could not play the full series due to an injury, while pace spearhead Megan Schutt was on a break for personal reasons. Left arm spinner Jess Jonassen, who also missed out on India series is also back in action.
Australia looks to be a solid team on paper and with ICC Women’s World Cup just a stone’s throw away, this could be the likely squad that goes into the marquee competition starting from March 4 in New Zealand.
I am a former cricketer having represented Mumbai University at All India University level. I was a part of MCA probables for the U-19 and U-23 age group. I have been an avid cricket writer for the last five years. Currently I am pursuing my Ph.D from IIT Bombay.