Two trophies and a player of the series award were the spoils for Alyssa Healy who says she’s “still learning” as a captain despite leading her team to five wins from six white-ball games after taking over from legendary Meg Lanning.
The shock international retirement of Lanning late in 2023 thrust Healy, who had been doing the job during the former captain’s self-imposed break from the game, in to the role full-time with the multi-format tour of India her first experience as skipper.
A loss in the one-off Test was a shock result for the world beaters before a return to type when the players put the coloured clothes on, securing a clean sweep of three ODI wins and finishing with two from three in the T20.
With separate trophies on offer, Healy’s luggage will be full after also being named player of the T20 series after finishing with a 38-ball innings of 55 in the final seven-wicket win in Mumbai.
“I am not sure if I deserve this … it’s a team award,” Healy said after accepting the award, having made scores of just 26 and eight in the previous two games.
“I’m just really proud of this group of people, we are here in India for over a month at a time we are traditionally spending time with our families at home.
“It’s the first time we have been away this time of year and the girls have just jumped in and played good hard cricket, I didn’t hear one complaint, one whinge.
“The month we have been here we have played two and a half days of bad cricket, that’s it. One and half days in the Test and one T20. I’m proud of that and hopefully we can have a successful 2024 off the back of it.
“I am still learning the captaincy, really lucky to have a bunch of people who know what they are doing.”
Healy became the first Australian and fourth player overall to reach 150 T20 Internationals in the third and final match as she lead the chase for India’s 6-147 which the Aussies achieved just three wickets down, and with eight balls to spare. Beth Mooney finished unbeaten on 52, her first half-century of the tour.
The home team was kept in check by Annabel Sutherland (2-18) and spinner Georgia Wareham (2-24), the latter finishing with five wickets for the T20 series, the most for the Aussies, and 12 across the two white-ball series.
Sutherland, who was the most expensive player in the WPL auction when she secured a $364,000 pay day, was player of the match for her miserly effort, which gave her 10 wickets across all the matches.
Litchfield proved the breakout star of the tour, making 260 runs in the ODI series, including a century, a solid comeback after being run out for a diamond duck, without facing a ball, in the Test match.
The Aussies will now return home to prepare for their next series against South Africa, at home, with three T20s and three ODIs,starting on January 27 in Canberra before it concludes with a Test match at the WACA in Perth.
AUSTRALIAN TOUR OF INDIA RESULTS
Test match: India won by eight wickets
First ODI: Australia won by six wickets
Second ODI: Australia won by three runs
Third ODI: Australia won by 190 runs
First T20I: India won by nine wickets
Second T20I: Australia won by six wickets
Third T20I: Australia won by seven wickets
Originally published as Australia won the T20 series against India after clean sweep of ODIs