Future on Alyssa Healy’s mind after Rachael Haynes’ call

Australia’s all-conquering women’s team face something of a changing of the guard this summer, with Shelley Nitschke the new coach and a new captain also likely.

Healy is among the favourites to take on the leadership if Lanning does not return in time for the T20 tour of India in December, with the wicketkeeper-batter confident she is ready if called upon. But it comes as the 32-year-old said she had recently been jolted into thinking about her own plans.

“Meg taking a break and Rach retiring, it hit me like a tonne of bricks,” Healy told AAP at the Men’s T20 World Cup trophy event in Sydney. “It made me sit back and think about what I’ve been doing and what it looks like for me.

“The beauty is I still really love the game and love being involved at the moment. I’m just going to just keep plugging along and doing what I’m doing and continue to enjoy it.”

One factor keeping Healy going is what remains on the horizon. After reclaiming the 50-over World Cup and winning Commonwealth Games gold this year were originally seen as the final frontiers, Australia now have their first Test in India in 39 years scheduled next December.

“Mitch jokes all the time at home that I’ve changed my mind about three or four times on continuing playing,” Healy said. “But it’s simply because of the fact that there continues to be new opportunities that pop up that I want to be a part of.

“I’ve got mad FOMO when I’m just watching cricket. We haven’t really toured India that much over the little period of time. So the fact that we’re going there twice in the space of 12 months is exciting.”

Meanwhile, Healy could serve as the answer to Australia’s captaincy question, following vice-captain Haynes’ retirement and with Lanning’s future still in doubt after opting out of the WBBL.

Healy has stated publicly there could be better candidates, with Beth Mooney, Jess Jonassen and Tahlia McGrath the other likely options.

But her history as one of Australia’s most experienced players, along with her time captaining NSW, would make her an obvious choice.

“I’ve taken a lot out of captaining NSW,” Healy said. “The beauty of our [NSW] squad over the last few years is leading a really young, inexperienced team. That’s been a really enjoyable job for me: Being able to talk cricket with young players.

“So I guess in a sense, it correlates across to the Aussie team. We’re in a similar sort of boat at the moment. I’ll take a lot of confidence and some experience out of that if it comes my way.”

(With Inputs from ESPN)

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