Australia captain Meg Lanning will not feature in Women’s World Cup clash against Pakistan in Leicester on Wednesday due to right shoulder injury. In her absence, Rachael Haynes has been called in the squad to lead the side. It is expected that Lanning will be fit for Sunday’s match against England.
Haynes has not played a single game in this World Cup. She made a comeback into the squad in February after three and a half years break. She has been given the captaincy role ahead of Alex Blackwell who is currently the vice-captain of the side.
“Meg has been undergoing rehabilitation on her right shoulder, following a chronic injury. The decision for Meg to miss today’s match will enable her to focus on some rehabilitation and we’ll continue to monitor her ahead of taking part in any further matches in the tournament.” Physiotherapist of the Australian team Kate Mahony said.
Last year also Lanning had to stay out of the first season of the England women’s T20 league. She has been continuing to play with a shoulder brace throughout this World Cup and for the first time she will be missing a match due to her shoulder problem.
Lanning has continued to perform flawlessly in the tournament despite the injury, scoring 152 not out and 48 in her last two matches. While Haynes was included into the Australian squad at the final moment after Blackwell suffered an injury. In her comeback match, Haynes scored a fifty against New Zealand and impressed the selectors.
Haynes has previously led Victoria to two Australian Women’s T20 Cup titles in 2009-10 and 2010-11. She has played three Tests, 34 ODIs and 27 T20s for Australia till date.
“Rachael has a wealth of leadership experience including successfully guiding Victoria to back-to-back national T20 titles and alongside Alex, will ensure the team is led to continue their current form,” Australian selector Shawn Flegler said.
“We know that Rachel is capable of coming in and doing the job that is asked of her as she demonstrated in New Zealand earlier this year when she scored a half-century after a lengthy absence from the national side.” she added.
Australia have not lost any of their group matches so far and a win against Pakistan will increase their chances to qualify for the semifinals.