Australia might have qualified for the finals of the 2022 Women’s World Cup, but, they have a big issue to sort out before the final as they have to decide on the availability of Ellyse Perry for Sunday.
Perry has been suffering from back spasms for the majority of the tournament. The severity of the injury resulted in her missing the last league match against Bangladesh and the Semi-Final game against West Indies. Annabel Sutherland has been filling her position in her absence and has been performing well.
Perry who’s had an unfortunate history of missing World Cup Finals had also missed the 2020 T20 World Cup Final against team India 2 years ago due to injury. The veteran all-rounder has been a major figure in the Australian Women’s team since 2007.
Perry has had a couple of rough years with both bat and ball as she hasn’t scored many runs with the bat nor taken wickets with the ball. In the ongoing 2022 Women’s World Cup, Perry was looking impressive as she scored a few handy knocks with the bat and took key wickets upfront. She also won 2 back to back ‘Player of the Match’ awards in successive matches against New Zealand and the West Indies.
— Female Cricket #CWC22 (@imfemalecricket) April 2, 2022
The injury became worse during the matches against India and South Africa resulting in her bowling only 3 overs in both the games and not coming out to bat in her usual no.5 position. Perry walked out during the match against South Africa on 22nd March and has not played much of cricket since as she’s nursing her injury.
In a recent interview before the Semi-Final game, Perry said that she will try her best to prove her fitness and come back to the side in the Semis. The Australian coach, Matthew Mott also put out the potential chance of Perry playing only as a batter in the Semi-Finals. All these things went south as Perry was ruled out from the Semis.
With the finals of the 2022 WC being on Sunday, Perry certainly wouldn’t want to miss out on one more final like the 2020 T20 World Cup and sit in the sides cheering her team. A firm decision will be taken by the Australian team on Saturday, April 2nd on the availability of Ellyse Perry. It will be a tough call to rule out an experienced all-rounder like Perry and the team must take that call if she’s not physically fit for the match.
Annabel Sutherland, who’s been playing in Perry’s position scored 26 runs and took one wicket with the ball against Bangladesh in the final league match. In the Semis against West Indies, Sutherland took one wicket and conceded just 26 runs in overs bringing highly economical.
Overall, we will get a final word on the availability of Perry for the final. The Australian women won’t have a big problem without her presence as they won the Semi-Finals against West Indies comfortably. Let’s hope we see Perry in the Final against England on Sunday.