Alyssa Healy: Australia’s World Cup winner ‘back to reality after doing a good job’

Australia’s World Cup victory adds to the T20 World Cup crowns and ashes they already hold

It’s been two weeks since flyhalf Alyssa Healy entered the record books with a jaw-dropping century to help Australia win the ICC Women’s World Cup final against England in New Zealand.

“Back to reality,” she said with a broad smile, relishing the normalcy of a bit of housekeeping.

“The rounds haven’t really changed me or my life, which is probably a good thing. It’s my job, after all. I guess I can tick the box and say I did a good job. “

Healy did more than a good job. It’s typical of her humble, down-to-earth nature that she considers his record of 170 on 138 balls – the highest individual score achieved in a men’s or women’s World Cup final – as the equivalent of a good day at the office. It will go down as one of the greatest one-day international rounds of all time.

Had she realized what an incredible shot she was playing at the time, it might not have lasted so long for the wicketkeeper.

“It’s going to sound a little silly, but it never felt special at any point, which is probably a good thing,” she says. “That meant it never really clicked in my mind what was going on.

“I was a bit worried about going there and facing the new ball, knowing their attack.

“Once we got through that awkward little period, it was grounded and solidified. It was one of those days where everything seemed to fall apart, so I was pretty lucky in the end.”

The chance continued until it was abandoned on the 41st after Australia were invited to strike first.

However, the skill and awareness of the game to build her innings, accelerate, manipulate fields and execute shots like the ramp – which is not a shot she naturally finds comfortable playing – and the pumped up cover drive (“sometimes I get a little amazed at how well I can hit the ball over cover”) was a matter of talent and skill, not luck.

“I don’t know where it came from,” she says of her ability to cross the boundary on the outside.

“I’ve played hockey a lot in my life, so there’s this natural bat swing. I also play a lot of golf. But I like the ability to hit over the side. I think that’s is such a natural cricket shot.

“I can look [Australia captain] Meg Lanning does that a lot on our team. Every time you hit a six over halfway or cover, it’s pretty special.”

“The feeling of having achieved something so much bigger”

To talk to Healy is to talk to a thinking cricketer. Like many of her teammates and opponents, she became more aware of her place in the larger scheme of women’s cricket and women’s sport, as her career lengthened.

The basic motivation to win and succeed as a team is now closely linked to the awareness of the inherited role it plays in shaping the future of others.

“It’s overwhelming fun for cricket as a whole at the moment,” she enthused. “It’s a booming sport in the world, and [it’s about] making it accessible to many young girls.

“For me, that’s what I enjoy the most. Obviously, I love the game, and I always have, but it’s that feeling of accomplishing something much bigger than winning. trophies and medals that keeps me going.”

Australia may be ahead of all other nations due to the years of professionalism behind them, but Healy believes the gap can be closed.

“You look at South Africa who had an amazing World Cup and played really good cricket and beat a lot of really good teams,” she said.

“They’re not as supported as we are. With proper investment and looking at our course system in particular, I can see the game moving forward for a lot of other nations and see it being really competitive.

“This World Cup has been the closest I’ve ever been to, so I think the gap isn’t as far as everyone seems to suggest.”

A female IPL?

India are considered the sleeping giant of women’s cricket, and despite the team’s rapid rise in profile after making the final of the World Cup in 2017 and the T20 World Cup in 2020, the powerhouses of country cricket have been slow to establish a women’s team. Indian Premier League.

“I think that’s naturally the next step,” Healy said of a women’s IPL. “Women’s football in India is such an untapped market.

“You’re watching the Indian side right now and I’d be terrified to think how good they’re going to be in 10 years from now if they get to experience a lot of cricket in a lot of different places, and bring in international players and play in a women’s IPL.”

An increase in domestic leagues, however, will need to be balanced with a growing international schedule in which top players are on tour for longer than ever. Particularly with the desire to play more test cricket. Healy agrees that a degree of careful planning is required.

“We’ve always been screaming for more cricket and more international cricket, so all of a sudden if you add domestic leagues in there, you’re taking international play away,” she explains.

“The opportunities are incredible, so you’d be silly not to take that, but it’s going to have to be balanced for it to work.”

At home, Healy balances her own life by spending time with her two Staffordshire Bull Terriers, time on the golf course where she has three handicaps, and time with her husband, an Australian fast bowler, Mitchell Starc.

She laughs at the order in which these three hobbies are offered to her and laughs within Starc’s deliberate earshot that the order of priorities is absolutely perfect.

At 30, she is often asked how long she plans to play and what’s next. In the coming months, the return of cricket, including the women’s cricket debut at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham in July, is a definite target. She also signed for Northern Superchargers in the Hundred.

So there are still new experiences for this passionate and talented cricketer who is making history.

More good days at the office too, no doubt.

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