Lanning makes cricket returns, Perry accumulates runs

Perry posted her highest score on List A, hitting 23 boundaries in a 125-ball 147 before going out in the 46th over. Faltum, who took over as captain after Sophie Molineux’s knee injury in November, was celebrating her first century.

Lanning got off to a rusty start but showed promising signs on her return. She opened batting with Sophie Reid and made 29 carries from 33 deliveries.

After a great field game, Reid ran for a duck on the second ball before Perry joined Lanning and settled things for Victoria. Lanning then fell to a brilliant catch from Anika Learoyd in the middle of the wicket of Lauren Smith’s bowling.

Ellyse Perry marks her century.

Ellyse Perry marks her century.Credit:Getty Images

Lanning’s return to professional cricket was announced at the end of December when she was named captain of the Australia team that will play Pakistan later this month.

She will play two games for Victoria and face NSW again on Saturday before leading the ODI side in a three-game streak from January 16.

Lanning took to social media to say she was “refreshed and ready” to return to the game she loved after taking time to travel and refresh.

“I can’t wait to get back on the field against Pakistan. Sometimes you just have to hit pause, step back, and take a breather. That’s certainly what I needed,” she posted on Instagram.

“The past six months have taught me a lot. I’ve learned so much about myself and who and what is important to me. I’ve always played my cards pretty close to my chest. This experience has given me a greater understanding of how opening up and talking to the people who care about you can make difficult times easier.”

Australian cricket legend Belinda Clark praised Lanning’s decision to take a break.

“Ash Barty did something similar when things got to the point where it’s best to take a step back. Then you can come back refreshed and I think Meg has a great cricket ahead of her,” Clark said Thursday morning at the unveiling of her statue at the SCG.

“Cricket is a game where you have to be on all the time. I think you’re going to see some great highlights from Meg Lanning over the next few years.”

Leg spinner Georgia Wareham returned Thursday after a lengthy layoff following an ACL injury she sustained in the WBBL in October 2021.

With Tom Decent Lanning makes cricket returns, Perry accumulates runs

Ryan Sederquist

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