Aussies to back Ellyse Perry with new ball

Australia will back Ellyse Perry to keep the new ball for Thursday’s Test against India after struggling to find her rhythm in the ODI series.

© Dave Hunt/AAP PHOTOS A return to the Test cricket arena is tipped to spark star cricketer Ellyse Perry into top form.

Perry, handed the new ball in all three one-dayers, conceded 7.35 runs per over from 14 overs to finish as the least economical bowler of the series.

The superstar allrounder’s lack of control was notable, although there were glimpses of her best and a textbook bouncer that struck Mithali Raj’s helmet in the series opener.

Perry, one of the first players picked in Australia’s XI throughout a decorated career, has dominated in all three formats.

But the 30-year-old’s numbers in eight Tests are particularly remarkable; 31 wickets at 18.19 and 624 runs at 78.

And coach Matthew Mott will bank on that at Metricon Stadium.

“She is swinging the ball and that’s a big thing,” Mott said. 

“Wides have probably been her downfall and they’re not as tough on those in the Test match. 

“We’re looking to take 20 wickets so you don’t want to waste the swinging ball. 

“If she’s doing that she’s going to probably get a pretty good opportunity at it.”

Perry’s ability to swing the ball will be particularly crucial under lights, with the night sessions expected to be key on a green Gold Coast wicket.

It will be Perry’s first Test since undergoing major hamstring surgery in 2020, which came after she was forced to miss Australia’s Twenty20 World Cup final triumph over India at the MCG.

The dual international, who said upon her return from that setback that she wasn’t interested in playing as a specialist batter.

But she has had to deal with coming out of two weeks’ quarantine after arriving in Queensland from Melbourne.

“Ellyse will be the first to admit she hasn’t really hit the ground with her bowling, as yet,” Mott said. 

“We’ve got to keep perspective on these things, anytime you put down tools for days … you’re going to have time to work through things. 

“They have worked on the alignments, it’s more to the left-handers than anything. 

“I think the adjustment to the right-handers has been good and she’s swinging the ball so there’s a lot to like about it.” 

Perry’s Sydney Sixers and Australia teammate Ash Gardner also backed her to find her best, given she has not been able to work into a long spell in white-ball cricket.

“More overs to bowl, more of a chance to get into a rhythm and build that pressure,” Gardner told AAP.

“Unfortunately for her, she probably hasn’t bowled as well as she would have liked (in the ODIs).

“You obviously cop a lot of scrutiny, especially when you haver her name and everyone knows how capable she is of being the best cricketer in the world.”

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