Healy confirmed for first T20 World Cup game in South Africa
Australia's wicketkeeper has overcome the calf strain that has kept her out of the Pakistan series
Alyssa Healy will play in the first game of Australia's T20 World Cup defence after recovering from a calf injury in time for the tournament in South Africa.
And with the first significant injury lay-off of her professional career behind her, the Australian vice-captain is eyeing a potential call-up to the Women's Premier League in India.
Healy has not played cricket since December 17, when she tweaked her calf on the T20I tour of India. But she was named in the 15-player squad announced for the Pakistan T20 series that finished last week and for next month's World Cup.
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Healy needed longer to recover than anticipated, though, and did not play at all against Pakistan. Expected to feature at some point in South Africa, she confirmed to reporters on Monday she would be available for the entire tournament.
"I'm feeling really good, ticking all the boxes," she said. "I'll be definitely right to go for that first game and hopefully get some [warm-up] games in before then."
The 32-year-old had enjoyed a blessed run of fitness prior to her calf injury and admitted sitting on the sidelines had tested her.
"I've absolutely hated every minute," she said. "I hated watching the cricket on the TV; I couldn't be a part of any of the cricket. It's a lesson for me to make sure I'm looking after myself moving forward if I want to be a part of stuff."
The auction for India's inaugural WPL will take place during the World Cup. Healy wasted no time nominating.
"I registered basically the day after that news came out just to make sure I got in there on time," she said. I'd love to be a part of it. If I'm not, so be it, [but] I just think the whole experience is going to be amazing for the players to get to go and be a part of that.
"I sat there at Chinnaswamy Stadium for the first-ever men's IPL game so the opportunity to sit at the first women's one would be a really nice moment."
The IPL is the most lucrative T20 tournament in the world and with millions of dollars of broadcast money already committed to its new off-shoot, women's players are set for unprecedented financial windfall.
"It sets us on the precipice of this whole new era for the game," said Australian all-rounder Ellyse Perry. "It's going to be really exciting."