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'Enormously Talented' Ellyse Perry Set for ODI Milestone

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: October 21, 2018, 10:47 AM IST
'Enormously Talented' Ellyse Perry Set for ODI Milestone

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Australian all-rounder Ellyse Perry is set to reach a special milestone when she steps out at the Kinrara Academy Oval in Kuala Lumpur for the third One-Day International against Pakistan Women on Monday (October 22). This will be Perry's 100th ODI appearance, as well as her 200th match for Australia across all formats.

The 27-year-old will join the elite company of Alex Blackwell, Karen Rolton, Lisa Sthalekar and Belinda Clark to have played 100 ODIs for her country. Former vice-captain Blackwell, who retired from the game after 251 appearances for Australia, is the only player to have represented her country more times than Perry.

Perry, who made her ODI debut in July 2007 against Australia's arch-rivals New Zealand, is already one of the most influential women cricketers and is also currently the top-ranked ODI batter and allrounder.

"I think the thing with Pez is that she's continuing to get better every season," Australia batter Elyse Villani told cricket.com.au. "She's always adding something to her game. You think she's reached her potential and then the season after she's brought something else into her game.

"It's pretty unbelievable I guess, that a player of her calibre is always improving. That's something I really admire in her. And the fact that she does both (batting and bowling) particularly well is an absolute credit to the amount of time that she spends on it, the dedication that she shows in her cricket is pretty unbelievable. She's an enormous talent, but she works bloody hard as well."

Perry made her debut at the age of 16 but it took her almost six years to cement her place in the Australian top-order. And now, she has 2549 runs in 99 ODIs at an impressive average of 49.98. While she is yet to breach that three-figure mark in this format, Perry has 25 half-centuries to her name. Her fitness and work ethic often leave her teammate Nicole Bolton in awe.

"She's gotten better every year that she's played, every one-day game that she's played, she's really taken her game to another level," said Bolton. "I think what makes her so good is the fact that she can bowl 10 overs and then she can go out and make a 100. I don't know too many players that have the stamina, the fitness, the concentration, the work ethic to be able to do that."

It's not just with the bat Perry has made a name for herself. The right-arm fast-medium bowler has 131 wickets to her name and is only behind Cathryn Fitzpatrick (180) and Lisa Sthalekar (146) in the list of Australia's highest wicket-takers.

"I think it's probably pretty even (between her batting and bowling) at the moment," Australia batter Beth Mooney reflected. "I think her bowling has come along in the last 12 months to be a bit more threatening than probably three or four years ago.

"So I think now I'd say it's probably a bit more even than a couple of years ago. She's definitely an all-round athlete and all-round player for whatever team she plays for, it's nice to have that many strings to your bow."

Perry has also played 93 Twenty20 Internationals in which she has scored 875 runs and picked up 90 wickets. Her unbeaten 213 in the first-ever women's day-night Ashes Test was one of the best Test innings in 2017.
First Published: October 21, 2018, 10:47 AM IST
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