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Alyssa Healy named Australia captain for India tour

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Last updated on 22 Nov 2022 | 03:36 AM
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Alyssa Healy named Australia captain for India tour

The five-match T20I series between India Women and Australia Women will take place across two venues in Mumbai

Following Meg Lanning’s indefinite break and Rachael Haynes retiring from the sport, Alyssa Healy has been appointed as the skipper of the Australian Women’s team for the India series, albeit it is not sure if it is a long-term deal. The decision, however, was always coming since Cricket Australia announced Healy as the vice-captain of the Australian cricket team following the international retirement of Rachael Haynes after the Commonwealth Games last month. 

The wicket-keeper batter was the stand-in vice-captain of the side in an interim capacity against India in 2021 and has been Ellyse Perry's deputy at the Sydney Sixers in the Women's Big Bash League. 

Australia have called up Ireland all-rounder Kim Garth to their set-up after she moved into Australia in 2020 and took up a contract with Cricket Victoria. She gained permanent residency last year and that made her eligible for Australia selection. According to prescribed rules, Garth, who had played 34 ODIs and 51 T20Is for Ireland, had to complete three years since last playing for Ireland.

"[Kim has] been in our thinking, she's had a couple of strong seasons with the ball and adds extra depth to our pace-bowling stocks," Australia’s national selector Shawn Flegler said. "She's a new-ball option but has a great change of pace as well."

"It's one of the most exciting names in the squad," skipper Healy said of the selection. "She made the move to Australia to try and do just this, play for Australia. The way she has developed over the years is impressive. Her new-ball skills with T20 cricket is what we need and she also has variations through the middle that are very handy. She's a great addition. Everyone is very excited for her. It's a big move to come all the way for Ireland to chase a dream, and she's done that. I am sure she is going to look at home in the green and gold and hopefully she can have a great career."

Cricket Australia have further called up uncapped Phoebe Litchfield and allrounder Heather Graham after their impressive performances in the ongoing edition of the Women’s Big Bash League. Despite Sydney Thunder’s shambolic performances, Litchfield was the bright hope that held them together and scored 280 runs at 23.33 with a strike rate of 117.64 to emerge as the highest run-scorer for the side.

Graham has scored 237 runs at 29.62 with a strike rate of 122.16 for Hobart Hurricanes this season and will play in the Eliminator against Brisbane Heat on Wednesday. That Graham has eight wickets to his name further adds to her credentials.

"Without Meg and Rachael [Haynes], this series will provide opportunities for players, particularly in the top order, so we're looking forward to seeing who puts their hand up," Flegler said. "It's pleasing to have been able to reward Phoebe, Kim and Heather for strong form throughout the WBBL, and hopefully they get the chance to show what they can do at some stage during the series.

"We've had an eye on Phoebe for a while and she's really taken her game to the next level this summer. She's made her mark at the top of the order for the Sydney Thunder and we're looking forward to seeing what she can do in Australian colours.

The five-match T20I series between India Women and Australia Women will take place across two venues in Maharashtra. The DY Patil will play host to the first two games following which the action will shift to the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai. The series will kick start on December 9 at the DY Patil Stadium where the first two games will be played and the rest of the tour will be played on December 14, 17 and 20.

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