Ellyse Perry is not ready to let go of bowling, revealing how a season of less time with ball in hand has left her more driven to evolve heading into her 15th international summer.
Perry will lead Australia’s attack against India when the multi-formatted series starts next week, with regular spearhead Megan Schutt missing following the birth of her child.
It comes just six months after Perry looked a chance of dropping her allrounder status, averaging 55 with the bat in a white-ball tour of New Zealand but sending down just seven of a possible 33 overs.
And while that came off the back of overcoming a torn hamstring, the 30-year-old has now spent a cricket-less winter with that as her last cricket.
“A lot was made of the limited impact that I had with the ball and it’s been a really great challenge to continue to evolve and try to improve that,” Perry said.
“Right across my career I’ve really enjoyed the challenge trying to get better and and evolve my game because the game’s evolved so much.
“I feel really fortunate and in a sense proud that I’ve been out to be involved with the team for so long.
“You’ve always got to evolve. But, yeah, maybe more so than in recent years.
“It was really stark, some great opportunities that I had to hopefully improve.
“And then to have such a long period of time over the off-season to do that back in Victoria, whilst we weren’t travelling or playing has been really good.”
Perry is not driven by numbers and is therefore not fazed by the idea of trying to get back to her career-best year of 2019, where she claimed 21 ODI wickets at 13.52.
But Australia’s leading women’s wicket-taker across all formats is committed to remaining part of the fast-bowling cartel.
“I completely understand why people look at (the numbers),” Perry said.
“But they are one thing and then the other side of it is playing a role and contributing to the squad and the team and how we want to play.
“As the personnel in our team evolves or we change that, I think your role as an individual slightly changes too.
“It’s kind of blending that and balancing that within a group … I’d just love to keep contributing and be a part of the bowling lineup.”
Meanwhile another challenge could come in workload.
Perry insists her body is now back to full strength and while she will take a bigger role in the upcoming series, Australia have a busy 18 months with two World Cups, a home Ashes and Commonwealth Games.
“We’ve got a fairly large squad there’ll certainly be some different opportunities for players to manage that,” she said.
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