UP Warriorz name Alyssa Healy as captain

Australia opener Alyssa Healy is going to captain WPL team UP Warriorz at the inaugural edition of the tournament starting March 4. Healy is among the six overseas players for Warriorz and was named the captain ahead of Deepti Sharma, who is from UP.

“The WPL is a tournament we have all been keenly waiting on, and the UP Warriorz have a fantastic squad, waiting to making a splash once things get going,” Healy said in a statement issued by Warriorz. “We have a good mix of experience and youth along with ability and look forward to putting on a show for our fans. We are here to win and be ruthless in our brand of cricket.”

Healy has won five T20 World Cups (2010, 2012, 2014, 2018 and 2020) and also won the ODI World Cup in New Zealand last year. She has scored 2446 T20I runs at a strike rate of nearly 128 with one century and 14 half-centuries. Healy led the Australia T20I side in India recently when regular captain Meg Lanning had taken a break from the game. Healy has also captained Sydney Sixers in the WBBL.

“Alyssa is a giant of the game and has an immense amount of experience at the highest level, and also has the winning habit which we want in our team,” Rajesh Sharma, managing director of Capri Globals, who own Warriorz, said. “We hope that the UP Warriorz can make significant strides in this important journey under the leadership of Alyssa Healy, and go on to be a source of joy and inspiration for the women of UP.”

The five other overseas players in the Warriorz squad are Sophie Ecclestone, Tahlia McGrath, Shabnim Ismail, Grace Harris and Lauren Bell. Some of the prominent Indian names with them, apart from Deepti, are Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Devika Vaidya, Anjali Sarvani and Kiran Navgire.

Warriorz will begin their WPL campaign on March 5, Sunday, against Gujarat Giants at the DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai. Each of the five teams will play the other teams twice for eight league games, before the Eliminator will be played between the teams that finish second and third. The winner of the Eliminator will play the table-topper in the final on March 26 at the Brabourne Stadium in Mumbai.

UP Warriorz squad: Alyssa Healy (capt), Sophie Ecclestone, Deepti Sharma, Tahlia McGrath, Shabnim Ismail, Anjali Sarvani, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Parshavi Chopra, Shweta Sehrawat, S Yashasri, Kiran Navgire, Grace Harris, Devika Vaidya, Lauren Bell, Laxmi Yadav, Simran Shaikh.