Navi Mumbai, Jan 10: After ending their tour of India on a high with a 2-1 T20I series triumph, Australia captain Alyssa Healy lavished rich praise on in-form Phoebe Litchfield, adding that she hopes the left-handed batter will have a long and successful career in international cricket.
Phoebe turned out to be the breakout star for Australia on their tour of India, scoring 266 runs in three innings, including slamming her second international century, and got the Player of the Series award in Australia’s 3-0 ODI series triumph. She followed it up with scores of 49, 17 not out and 18 not out as a middle-order batter in the T20I series triumph.
"I was joking sitting on the bench that I remember when I was that fearless when you come out and you have lost two wickets in an over and play a ramp over the keeper’s head for four.”
“Unbelievable talent but at the same time she has got a good head on her shoulders and has fitted in beautifully in our squad and will play a key role for us in the Bangladesh T20 World Cup (in 2024) and the ODI World Cup (in India in 2025) in these conditions in the next 18 months. She is great to watch and hopefully, she is going to have a long and successful career for Australia," said Alyssa after the end of third T20I, which Australia won by seven wickets at the DY Patil Stadium.
She was also proud of how Australia turned up to win the white-ball series after losing the one-off Test to India at the Wankhede Stadium on the beginning of their tour. "I'm just really, really proud of this group of people. We're here in India over a month that we're traditionally at home spending time with our families, and it's the first time we've been away at this time of year and literally the girls have just jumped in and played some good hard cricket."
"I didn't hear one complaint, I didn't hear one whinge, they just genuinely enjoyed one another's company and enjoy being here in India. I think the month that we've been here we played two-and-a-half bad days of cricket, that was it – one-and-a-half days in the Test match and one T20. I'm really proud of the group for that and hopefully we can have a really successful 2024 off the back of it."
Alyssa, the wicketkeeper-batter, also felt the Australian team got some valuable information and areas to improve as a unit about the sub-continent conditions ahead of two World Cups happening in this part of the world.
"I think we've gained some valuable information. At the same time there's probably some areas where we can improve and some areas that we're nailing at the moment, which I'm really proud of, but some areas that we can focus on in the next 12 months that are going to make us successful in tournament play."
"It's pretty cutthroat when you come into a World Cup, you've got to win games and you've got to get yourselves over the line and I think we're going to have a squad to do it, it's just nailing down our plans and our shot selection, more importantly, over here." (IANS)