Alyssa Healy helps Australia to victory in nail-biting Ashes opener

Alyssa Healy helps Australia to victory in nail-biting Ashes opener

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Australia have claimed the Women’s Ashes opening one-day international, coming out on top with just two wickets to spare.

In the low scoring match in Leicester on Tuesday night, Australia only just crawled over the line to win 178-8. England was bowled out for 177.

Australia’s nail-biting win was not unexpected, as the side won both of the Ashes warm-up matches against English Academy side since arriving in the UK.

Alyssa Healy, who top scored with 66 runs, brought up her half-century from just 57 balls. She struck 10 boundaries and her impressive innings helped edge Australia to their narrow victory. Healy was named Player of the Tournament at the most recent T20 World Cup.

Ellyse Perry claimed three wickets within six overs and was named player of the match.

Australia’s fielding was near faultless, especially as Rachael Haynes took a stunning one-handed catch to out England’s Anya Shrubsole.

“It’s nice to get a win first up, our bowlers put England on the back foot early but England bowled well too so it’s good to get over the line. Early wickets always put you under pressure, especially against a strong top order,” said Australia’s captain Meg Lanning after the match.

“We didn’t think it would be straightforward, but Alyssa Healy showed everyone how to bat – she played very straight and pounced on any width. We feel we’ve got a little bit to work on, and I’m sure England will too.”

All rounder Ellyse Perry was also proud of the team’s victory.

“As a group we bowled incredibly well. I was probably a little bit loose at times but as a team and bowling group it was a really great performance and it’s nice in a series to make a statement like that,” she said.

Australia will meet England again at the same venue on Thursday (11pm AEST) in another one-day encounter.

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