Alana King aiming to make WACA Ground ‘her own’ ahead of one-off Test against SA

Sydney, Feb 11 (IANS) Australia leg-spinner Alana King said she is aiming to make the WACA Ground her own when the one-off Test against South Africa begins on February 15. Alana has fair experience of being at the iconic venue, owing to spending four seasons with Western Australia and three with the Perth Scorchers in the WBBL.

Alana took career-best figures of 4-28 in Saturday’s ODI against South Africa at the North Sydney Oval, and has been in the playing eleven of Australia’s last three Test matches. “Any Test match that comes around, as we know they’re few and far between so when the opportunity does come one hundred per cent I’d love to be part of it.

“It’s my new home, Perth, and the WACA is one of the best places to play cricket. I’ve adapted pretty well to bowling at the WACA for the last four seasons now. I love it – I think the extra bounce helps my game.”

“Not too much changes – yes, it hasn’t been spin friendly (traditionally) but I think you make it your own. I’ve loved having that extra bounce, it’s brought different modes of dismissals in for me and I’ve made it my own, hopefully,” said Alana to The Scoop podcast.

Speaking about how the WACA pitch would be for the one-off four-day Test, Alana opined, “Some games played on different pitches on the square during the WBBL … there was plenty of turn and bounce there. We’re playing on the Test wicket, which is the middle wicket (and) it hasn’t had any cricket on it for the last couple of seasons. It’s nice to see there’s a beautiful strip of green grass over the Test wicket.”

If Alana is included in the playing eleven for the Perth Test, it would be her fourth appearance in the format in the last two years. She also revealed about the people in the national set-up and outside of it for taking advice related to playing Test cricket.

“We don’t have to look too far within our team. There’s plenty of experienced heads, we’ve got Marshy and Presto (assistant coaches Dan Marsh and Scott Prestwidge), who’ve played a lot of red-ball cricket, Shelley Nitschke’s played a fair bit of red-ball cricket as well.”

“I can always tap into people in WA (too) … Beau Casson is the guy who I tap into a lot. He’s helped me a fair bit on and off the field as well, I’d love to see him a lot more but obviously with his schedule and my schedule, it just never seems to cross over.

“But he is a touch point that I have in Perth and even if it’s a really quick catch up … he always just checks in to see how I’m going. Over the last season, he saw a few things and we had a couple of sessions and tweaked a few things and I’ve even got my mentor back in Melbourne as well, Jim Higgs, who I speak to quite often,” she concluded.

–IANS

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