Perry's all-round brilliance denies India clean sweep
Australia Women 5 for 136 (Perry 55*) beat India Women 8 for 121 (Perry 4-12) by 15 runs
Ellyse Perry played a dominant part in the Southern Stars' consolation victory over India, in the third match of the women's Twenty20 series, at the SCG.
Having chosen to play in the third T20 match rather than appear in the W-League grand final, which also happened to fall on Sunday, Perry made it count by striking 55 from 41 balls then dismantling India's middle order in a swift and accurate second spell that left her with memorable figures of 4 for 12 - a new personal best in T20s.
A pair of successful chases in Adelaide and Melbourne had already given India the series victory, so it was no surprise to see Mithali Raj send the Australians in to bat after a successful call at the toss. Things did not look like improving for the hosts when Alyssa Healy perished to the very first ball of the match from Jhulan Goswami.
However the Southern Stars captain Meg Lanning combined with Beth Mooney for a steadying stand, setting down a platform that allowed Perry to launch when she arrived at the crease in the eighth over. While wickets fell regularly at the other end, Perry's sure eye and considerable power had her clearing the ropes three times to help Australia to a more than defendable tally of 136.
A crowd that would build up to 7,169 by the finish was left to wonder for some time whether this would turn out to be a series sweep by India, as Vellaswamy Vanitha, Veda Krishnamurthy and Harmanpreet Kaur all made strong contributions. But none were able to go on from their starts to the sort of substantial score Perry had made, and from 3 for 94 in the 14th over things began to unravel.
Rene Farrell had made a key incision by defeating Raj with a perfectly-pitched slower ball out the back of the hand, but the slide was to be largely induced by Perry's speed and accuracy. She epitomised this with a fast and precise delivery that splayed the stumps of Anuja Patel.
Perry's four wickets more or less decided the contest before Farrell claimed one more wicket when Shikha Pandey skied one for Healy to pouch, and the last two overs played out without India ever looking like reaching the target.
Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @danbrettig