Ellyse Perry couldn’t pull off a miracle win over England at the WACA one-off Test yesterday, but the 23-year-old all-rounder did the next best thing to waltz away with the player of the match.
Australia started the final day requiring 128 to win and five wickets in hand, with Perry on one and Sarah Elliott on five.
England won by 61 runs, with Perry cracking a career-best 71 and 31, and bowling a career-best 5-38 and 3-41 off 40 overs.
Her Test averages stand at 40.20 with the bat, and 20.27 with the ball.
Next up for the Australians are three ODIs, and three T20s, with the novel Ashes campaign a points aggregate of the seven matches.
The Test win gave England six points and with the limited over matches worth only two points each, the Perth loss means the Australians need to win five of those six matches to regain the Ashes.
And Perry, a dual cricket and football international since she was 16 and still at Pymble Ladies College, will be a key figure with 57 ODIs under her belt and 27 T20s.
That’s right in the Perry ball park, as she proved in the 2010 T20 World Cup final, winning the player of the match award as the Australians crept home by three runs over New Zealand.
It would be great if the popular media gave these girls more support instead of burying their efforts near the comics.
Sam Stosur is a perfect example.
It doesn’t matter whether Stosur wins or loses, she still gets plenty of coverage.
Her 6-3 6-4 win over Czech Klara Zakopalova in the opening round of the Australian Open yesterday was just as big as her 6-3 6-2 defeat by the same player, ranked 37 in the world, in the Hobart semis three days earlier.
Nobody is more unpredictable than Sam Stosur, yet the media loves her.
Spreading some of that support to the likes of Ellyse Perry and her Southern Stars teammates would go a long way to publicly recognising their status as national representatives.
The same can be said of the Hockeyroos, the Diamonds, Opals, and the Matildas.
All four sports are among the best in the world, yet rarely are their efforts ever recognised.
Now would be a good time to start, with the Australian women’s cricket team.