Meg Lanning bats for more Tests in women's cricket

February 1, 2024
Meg Lanning, the former Australia captain and winner of multiple World Cups in white-ball cricket

Adelaide, Feb 1 (IANS) Meg Lanning, the former Australia captain and winner of multiple World Cups in white-ball cricket, has called for more Test matches in international women’s cricket. Her comments come ahead of Australia set to play their first-ever Test match against South Africa at the WACA in Perth in mid-February.

In recent times, Australia, South Africa, England and India have played women’s Test matches, while New Zealand, West Indies and Pakistan haven’t participated in the longer format since 2004. The Test against South Africa is Australia’s third game in the longer format in the last 12 months, but Meg wants to see more Tests in women’s cricket.

“I actually like the multi-format series. Test matches are interesting. I think personally we need to play more of them to be able to play them well and get used to them. I think it’s difficult to prepare for a Test match. In my career, we were playing once every two years. It takes us two days to work out how to play it and then the Test is over.”

“I think if you really want the games to be a good contest, the more matches you (need to) play and for players to understand their game a little bit more. I think we probably need to play more if that’s the case. I understand it’s difficult (for fixtures to be scheduled),” said Meg to reporters.

The right-handed batter played just six Tests among her 241 appearances for Australia, before announcing a shock retirement from the international game last year. The careers of Meg and former team-mate Rachael Haynes, along with their on-field achievements, leadership and impact on the women’s game will be celebrated during Saturday’s ODI series opener between Australia and South Africa in Adelaide via a celebratory lap.

“Or you sort of go the other way and you don’t play any at all and you focus on the short format stuff. Obviously with South Africa coming in, India interested in playing some Tests, I think that’s great. If that means there’ll be more Tests in the calendar, I think that’ll happen over time.”

“It’s either more, or you don’t sort of go there at all, because I think once every so often it’s really difficult as a player to play and it’s probably not going to be the best product,” added Meg.

Meg, who also captained Australia to a Commonwealth Games gold medal at Birmingham in 2022, will be still turning out for Victoria in WNCL, Melbourne Stars in the WBBL and for Delhi Capitals in WPL 2024 starting on February 23.

She admitted that her international retirement hasn’t sunk in yet. “Until I probably stop completely, it probably won’t sink in. It’s obviously been a different last couple of months, a little bit more time and little bit more quiet to spend with friends and family and sort of take stock a little bit. I’ve enjoyed that.”



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