‘s fast-bowling injury curse has struck again, this time ruling Lauren Cheatle out of the deciding three-match T20 stretch of the Ashes.
Cricket were on Tuesday afternoon awaiting scan results that would determine the extent of a lower back injury, and whether it would impinge on the luckless left-armer’s n summer.
Cheatle missed the three one-day internationals against England and didn’t play in the recent drawn Test match at North Sydney Oval.
She was expected to feature in the T20 component of the multi-format series, but will now be forced to watch from the sidelines as well.
Whether she misses any Women’s Big Bash for her new club, the Sydney Sixers, remains to be seen.
Her untimely injury is the latest in a list of n fast bowlers battling back issues, which includes spearheads James Pattinson and Nathan Coulter-Nile, who have been ruled out of any Ashes action this summer.
It also adds to a growing list of setbacks 19-year-old Cheatle has endured over the past year, which includes a shoulder injury that kept her out of the women’s World Cup and a bout of glandular fever.
Veteran NSW quick Sarah Aley has been drafted into the n 13-strong T20 squad to help cover Cheatle, while Molly Strano and Delissa Kimmince have been given an opportunity ahead of Nicole Bolton and Tahlia McGrath.
“To have a young fast bowler go down like that it is disheartening,” Bolton said.
“I know she’s put in such a lot of work to get herself back in a position to bowl for . She’ll be sorely missed.”
Bolton will captain the Governor General’s XI against England on Wednesday evening at Drummoyne Oval before the first Ashes T20s is played at North Sydney Oval on Friday.
The series then moves to Canberra for the last two matches. England must win all three T20s to reclaim the Ashes, won by in 2015.
Off-spinner Danielle Hazell, likely to be unleashed on on Friday for the first time this series, said England had their tails up after grinding out a draw in last week’s Test.
“We’re very clear with what we need to do now with the three T20s left, we need to win all three of them and we have to bring our best game for that,” Hazell said.
“It’s a quarter-final, a semi-final and a final for us. The series has set itself up this way and it’s all we have to do now – it’s obviously going to see who wins the Ashes in the end.”
England were criticised after the Test by n coach Matthew Mott who wasn’t happy with their sluggish batting rate in the first innings. But Hazell was quick to dismiss suggestions the visitors were playing only for a draw.
“Any game of cricket you turn up to play you want to win, we were very clear that that’s what we needed to do in the game, whether that be a Test match, one-dayer or T20,” Hazell said.
“He’s entitled to his opinion and that’s the way that he viewed that game and that’s what he thought happened.”