WPL 2023 | Alyssa Healy handed captaincy of UP Warriorz
Alyssa Healy has represented Australia in 239 matches across all formats|
Women's Premier League outfit UP Warriorz announced on Wednesday that Australian Alyssa Healy would be leading the side in their inaugural season. The other contender for the spot was Deepti Sharma who in recent times has starred for India and is native to UP but lacks leadership experience.
The UP Warriorz became the second team after Royal Challengers Bangalore to announce their captain for the first season of the Women's Premier League by handing the honour to international stalwart Alyssa Healy. The Australian vice-captain was bought at the auction by the Capri Globals-owned franchise for a bargain INR 70 lakhs and is expected to be a game-changer in the tournament that would last for nearly one month. Healy, 32, has 139 T20Is under her belt, scoring 2,446 runs at an average of 24.46 and a strike rate of 127.72, including a century and 14 half-centuries. The wicket-keeper batter recently led the Australian team in four T20Is in India due to the absence of Meg Lanning and ensured the visitors came away with a comfortable series victory.
"The WPL is a tournament we have all been keenly waiting on, and the UP Warriorz have a fantastic squad, waiting to make a splash once things get going," Healy was quoted saying in a statement issued by Warriorz.
The other name making the rounds as a potential captain was 25-year-old Deepti Sharma. The all-rounder has already represented India in 91 T20Is and is the fourth-highest-ranked all-rounder in the format but is yet to captain the national side or any other major T20 franchise.
"We have a good mix of experience and youth along with the ability and look forward to putting on a show for our fans. We are here to win and be ruthless in our brand of cricket," Healy added.
Healy has five World T20 and an ODI World Cup winner medal to her name, including a career-high 170 in the final. Often touted as a player for big occasions, the right-handed batter is the eighth-ranked batter in T20Is at the moment and has two half-centuries to her name from 18 T20Is in India, at an average of 23.68 and a strike rate of 130-plus. She would be responsible for leading compatriots Tahlia McGrath and Grace Harris alongside the likes of Sophie Ecclestone, Shabnim Ismail, Lauren Bell, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Devika Vaidya, Anjali Sarvani, and Kiran Navgire when the team begins its campaign against the Gujarat Giants at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai on March 5.
"Alyssa is a giant of the game and has an immense amount of experience at the highest level, and also has the winning habit which we want in our team. We hope that the UP Warriorz can make significant strides in this important journey under the leadership of Alyssa Healy, and go on to be a source of joy and inspiration for the women of UP," Rajesh Sharma, managing director of Capri Globals, said after the reveal.