A prolific partnership forged in fun
July 13, 2017
The Perry-Lanning combo thrives yet again as Australia approaches the business end of their World Cup campaign
Australia captain Meg Lanning says the secret to her run scoring success with Ellyse Perry is all about understanding, communication and enjoying themselves.
The pair put on an unbeaten third-wicket stand of 124 to guide Australia into the Women's World Cup semi-finals on Wednesday, the latest instalment in what's become an incredibly profitable combination for the tournament favourites.
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The Lanning and Perry partnership averages 109.57 for Australia, with their performance in Bristol the eighth time they've shared a century stand.
While the pair have been in the same Australian team since 2010, they only batted together for the first time in late November 2014. Since then, they've scored 1534 runs across 18 stands together.
Their conversion rate is also incredibly high, with four fifty partnerships standing alongside those eight hundreds.
"We enjoy ourselves while we're out there," Lanning said on Wednesday.
"We know if we try and put some pressure on the bowlers it will get a bit easier and the longer you bat, the easier it gets.
"I think we understand each other's game well and our communication is good as well.
"Batting at three and four are key positions in the line-up and it's important once we get in that we put a big partnership together.
"It was nice to do that today."
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While the Lanning and Perry show is leading the way for Australia in this World Cup – the batters have scored 328 and 311 runs respectively with one match remaining in the group stage – Perry did inadvertently deny her captain a special place in the record books in the closing stages of Wednesday's match.
Lanning finished the game unbeaten on 67, one run shy of 3000 one-day international runs.
Had she scored that one extra run, she would have reached the milestone in 62 innings, the equal-fastest by any woman alongside Australia legend Belinda Clark.
Perry finished the chase with a boundary from the first ball of the 46th over, but Lanning said neither had been aware a record was in the offing.
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"We actually thought we had five to win at the start of that over, I'm not sure what happened," Lanning laughed.
"I'm not too fussed about it, to be honest.
"I'm happy we got the win today and we sort of put together a really good overall performance.
"I was really happy with how the group responded."
While Lanning wasn't fazed by the lost opportunity, the 25-year-old will likely break just about every other run-scoring record in the book if she continues scoring at the rate she has since making her international debuting in 2010.
Earlier in her innings, Lanning brought up her 5000th international run, becoming the fourth Australian to reach the mark behind Clark, Karen Rolton and current teammate Alex Blackwell, who passed the mark last weekend.
India captain Mithali Raj broke the all-time women's ODI runs record earlier in the match, passing former England captain Charlotte Edward's mark of 5992 runs before becoming the first female player to reach 6000 ODI runs.
Given the ever increasing number of games being played, Lanning could be the player who eventually reels in Raj's record.
"Maybe, because she's got the all-round shots," Raj said when asked if she believed Lanning might one day pass her mark – which stood at 6028 at the end of Wednesday's game, but will eventually be much higher, given the 34-year-old intends to continue playing for another year or longer.
"The form she's in, surely in four to five years she should be breaking that record."