‘We certainly aren’t complacent’ – Meg Lanning looks ahead to T20 World Cup bid

‘We certainly aren’t complacent’ – Meg Lanning looks ahead to T20 World Cup bid

Australia vs Pakistan – Match abandoned

Australia captain Meg Lanning says her champion team is as hungry as ever as they prepare to head to South Africa and defend their Women’s T20 World Cup title.

Rain prevented Australia getting a final chance to fine-tune before leaving home soil, with their third T20 against Pakistan rained out on Sunday afternoon in Canberra without a ball being bowled.

Light but persistent rain at Manuka Oval meant the players never took to the field for the dead rubber encounter, leaving the hosts to claim the three-game series 2-0.

The players will now head to Sydney for Monday night’s Australian Cricket Awards before flying to South Africa on Tuesday, with warm-up games scheduled against India (February 6) and Ireland (February 8).

Australia head into the tournament as a hot favourite, but Lanning said they would be dealing with a string of teams coming to take their crown.

“We’re very aware there’s a lot of good teams out there who are chasing the same amount of success; we certainly aren’t complacent in any way,” she said. “We have high expectations on ourselves…we’re a very driven, very competitive group so that naturally lends itself to big tournaments like this where you need to be at your best.”

The skipper said Australia had not been planning to use Sunday’s clash to give depth players a chance heading into the showpiece tournament, although nine bowlers were used in Friday’s second game of the series to reduce the workload on the frontline quicks.

Australia cruised to a pair of eight-wicket wins in the first two games against Pakistan in Sydney and Hobart, with a five-wicket haul from Megan Schutt and an unbeaten half-century from Ellyse Perry the standout performances.
Star wicketkeeper-batter Alyssa Healy did not play in the series after a calf injury from the recent tour of India, but will be on the plane to South Africa and is a possibility to feature in the warm-up games.

“She’s striking well, it’s all going to plan…I assume if she can, she’ll play some of those practice games over there,” Lanning said. “She’s a very entertaining batter who takes the game on, puts the opposition under pressure from ball one, that’s an important part of T20 cricket.

“The other thing is just experience in big games. She’s performed really well under pressure before, and that’s something not every team has.”

Australia’s opening game of the World Cup will be against New Zealand in Paarl on February 12.

(With Inputs from ESPN)

#certainly #arent #complacent #Meg #Lanning #ahead #T20 #World #Cup #bid