Perry to lead young attack against India
Ellyse Perry is set to lead Australia's inexperienced attack in Mackay, where young gun Tayla Vlaeminck will miss the start of a multi-format series against India.
Vlaeminck will be out of action throughout the ODI and Test legs of India's tour, while spearhead Megan Schutt and star spinner Jess Jonassen are missing the entire series that begins on Tuesday.
Perry has been used sparingly as a bowler since returning from the hamstring injury that forced her to miss the 2020 Twenty20 World Cup final.
But coach Matthew Mott, speaking after Perry claimed the prized scalp of Meg Lanning in Thursday's intra-squad match, ended speculation the veteran might shed the allrounder tag soon.
"It's something we've spoken about. Without Schutt and Jonassen, she is going to play a really pivotal role in leading our attack," Mott said.
"They have been two of the best-performed bowlers over the last five years.
"Our bowling coach Ben Sawyer, who worked a lot with her (Perry) at the Sixers, is really happy with where she's at.
"He can't remember her being as strong.
"She had a pretty good bowl today. She probably got a little bit of tap early but then came back and got a wicket ... bowled really well."
Australia's next generation of fast bowlers, including uncapped quicks Stella Campbell and Maitlan Brown, are certain to get ample opportunity to impress as selectors stew over their likely World Cup squad.
A suboptimal lead-up, including a fortnight in hotel quarantine for the bulk of the squad, and congested schedule has Mott and medicos more worried about workloads than usual.
"We're going have to churn through some bowlers," he said.
"We've got some young bowlers who have to be managed really well."
Australia are desperate for Vlaeminck, who missed the 2020 World Cup because of a serious foot injury, to be fit and firing come next year's 50-over World Cup and Commonwealth Games.
"Tayla's had some little niggles ... we've been monitoring," Mott said.
"We've got a huge 18 months coming up.
"We know the impact that she can have when she plays."
Mott admitted he doubted whether India's tour, initially set to start in Sydney then on the cusp of being moved to Melbourne, would go ahead.
"Words can't describe how excited they are (to play)," he said.
Australia and India will play a warm-up match in Brisbane on Saturday before shifting attention to the series opener.
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