Australia women’s captain Meg Lanning ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/meg-lanning-329336) has been ruled out of the upcoming T20I and ODI home series against West Indies and is instead set to make a gradual playing return via domestic cricket as she continues her recovery from an undisclosed medical issue.
Lanning’s name did not appear on the two squad lists Australia released on Friday with Alyssa Healy ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/alyssa-healy-275486) returning as stand-in captain having recovered from the broken finger that kept her out of Australia’s last ODI against Ireland in August and the Hundred. Ellyse Perry ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/ellyse-perry-275487) also missed the last ODI against Ireland and the hundred due to a knee injury but has also been named to return.
Lanning has not played for Australia since the T20 World Cup in South Africa in February and has not played at all since the WPL in March after she was ruled out of the entire UK tour ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/eng-vs-aus-women-s-ashes-meg-lanning-ruled-out-of-the-ashes-alyssa-healy-to-lead-australia-1378618) with an undisclosed medical issue. She has returned to training with Victoria in recent weeks and was scheduled to make a pre-season trip to Queensland with her state side however she is not ready to return to international cricket for the two series against West Indies, with the first T20I at North Sydney Oval on October 1. The two sides play three T20Is in five days before starting the ODI series on October 8 in Brisbane with the final two matches on October 12 and 14 in Melbourne.
Australia team doctor Pip Inge confirmed that no date has been set on Lanning’s return, but it is likely to be in the WNCL for Victoria.
“Meg is progressing well but remains unavailable for competitive cricket,” Inge said. “No date has been set for Meg’s return to play, however, we anticipate a gradual return through domestic cricket.
“CA medical staff will continue to work closely with Meg and an update on her availability will be provided in due course.”
CA’s national selector Shawn Flegler confirmed Lanning remains firmly in Australia’s plans with the next international series coming in December in India, after the WBBL.
“Although currently unavailable for selection, Meg remains an integral part of our team and we’ll continue to support her throughout her return to play program,” Flegler said.
He also confirmed Healy and Perry would both play in the WNCL prior to the West Indies series and was pleased that Healy could return as stand-in captain, after stand-in vice-captain Tahlia McGrath led Australia in the last game in Ireland.
“Alyssa and Ellyse are on track in their return to play programs,” Flegler said. “Both are well placed to take part in Women’s National Cricket League matches later this month and are expected to be fully available for the upcoming international series.
“Alyssa embraced the added challenge of captaincy during the Ashes and will again lead the team in Meg’s absence. We’re fortunate to have plenty of international experience and strong leaders within the squad and know she will be well supported.”
There were no major surprises in the squads with just the one change between the T20I and ODI group for each series. Grace Harris ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/grace-harris-381268) has been picked for the T20Is only with legspinner Alana King ^(https://lotus365.today/goto/https://www.espncricinfo.com/cricketers/alana-king-944393) left out. King will return in Harris’ place for the ODI series.
Australian Women’s T20I squad vs West Indies: Alyssa Healy (capt), Tahlia McGrath (vc), Darcie Brown, Ashleigh Gardner, Kim Garth, Grace Harris, Jess Jonassen, Phoebe Litchfield, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Georgia Wareham
Australian Women’s ODI squad vs West Indies: Alyssa Healy (capt), Tahlia McGrath (vc), Darcie Brown, Ashleigh Gardner, Kim Garth, Jess Jonassen, Alana King, Phoebe Litchfield, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Georgia Wareham