Australia-Women2

2017 was a topsy-turvy year for the Australian women s team. The year commenced with a string of losses, but finished on a high. Their season can be summed up in three phases. With the ICC Women s World Cup at stake in middle of the year, the Meg Lanning-led side played a fiery series against oceanic neighbour s New Zealand at home.

The start

Both T20I and ODI series went down to the wire that ended in 2-1 victories for the visitor s and hosts respectively. The series set precedence for Australia that Lanning, Elyse Villani and Alex Healy will form the crux of their batting going ahead.

Unsuccessful ICC Women s World Cup 2017 campaign

Australia went into the marquee Women s tournament of the year with a well-balanced side that had a mix of youth and experience in the form of Ellyse Perry, Alex Blackwell, Kristen Beams, Nicole Bolton and Beth Mooney.

The warm up games against Pakistan and South Africa were one-sided affairs that Australia came out as winners. Australia remained dominant in the early parts of group stages zooming past West Indies, New Zealand and Pakistan.

Match no.19 saw Australia face off against England. With hype surrounding the clash, a tight effort by Alex Hartley and co. managed to restrict Australia below 268 and snatch the match by 3 runs.

Australia reached the semi-finals after finishing second in the points table only to meet a rampaging Indian side.

Hamanpreet Kaur ends Australia s march

In a rain curtailed match, Harmanpreet drowned Australia s hope with a lionhearted show. She hammered an unbeaten 171* in 115 balls that helped India reach 281 for 4 in 42 overs.

In reply the defending champions fell 36 runs short for their target, despite fifties from Elyse (75) and Alex Blackwell (90).

Ellyse Perry (404) was the highest run-getter for Australia across the 13 games, while Bolton (351) and Lanning (328) came second and third respectively.

Kristen was the pick of the bowlers with 12 scalps, closely followed by Megan Schutt and Jess Jonassen with 10 and 9 wickets respectively.

The Ashes year-ending high

Ahead of the one-off day-night Test, Australia received damaging news that Lanning has been ruled out of the series, with Beth Mooney taking over reigns.

The ODI series came out in favour of the hosts by margin of 2-1. The first and the final games were nail-biting affairs, with only the second being a one-sided match.

The historic first-ever pink-ball Test at Adelaide threw up a lot of excitement but ended in a draw. It was Australia s all round show that saw them rule most of the match days. Ellyse (213*) slammed the third highest score in Women s Test cricket. England in the second innings led by Heather Knight and new comer Georgia Elwiss helped them keep Australia s new-ball attack at bay.

The match ended in a draw that would have disappointed the home side.

The action now shifted to the shortest-format of the game T20Is. Australia were now lead by Rachel Haynes in an attempt to retain the Ashes title. Australia won the first T20I and claimed stake at the women s Ashes title for another two years, while England bounced back in the remaining two matches to win the 3-T20I series.

Record in 2017

ODIs

Team Mat Won Lost Tied NR
Australia Women

14

10

4

0

0

T20Is

Team Mat Won Lost Tied NR
Australia Women

6

2

4

0

Player statistics

ODI Top 3 run-getters

Player Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave

100

50

Ellyse Perry

13

12

3

515

71

57.22

0

6

Nicole Bolton

14

14

1

509

107*

39.15

1

4

Meg Lanning

9

9

3

491

152*

81.83

2

1

ODI Top 3 wicket-takers

Player Mat Inns Overs Runs Wkts
Megan Schutt

11

11

101

474

21

Jess Jonassen

13

13

122

558

17

Ashleigh Gardner

12

12

112

499

15

T20I Top 3 run-getter

Player Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave

100

50

Beth Mooney

6

6

2

226

117*

56.5

1

1

Elyse Villani

6

6

1

126

73*

25.2

0

1

Meg Lanning

3

3

0

74

60

24.66

0

1

T20I Top 3 wicket-takers

Player Mat Inns Overs Runs Wkts
Amanda-Jade Wellington

5

5

16

93

9

Megan Schutt

6

6

20

133

7

Molly Strano

5

5

19

120

7

In totality, Australia had a fairly decent year that saw the rise of players like Beth, Nicole, Megan, Elyse and Alex Healy. Management rushed in young blood that shined when the opportunity came and held their own in moments of distress.

Going ahead with ICC Women s T20 World Cup in sight, Australia to their credit have a side that could outmatch any team across departments and may be, even win record their fourth title reign come November.