Ellyse Perry handed ultimatum: quit cricket or go
Despite being handed an ultimatum by her W-League club to quit cricket or be sacked, dual international Ellyse Perry is adamant she can still do it all.
DESPITE being handed an ultimatum by her W-League club to quit cricket or be sacked, dual international Ellyse Perry is adamant she can still do it all.
Perry, a women’s Ashes-winning pace bowler and Matildas World Cup defender, has successfully split her time between cricket and football since first selected at age 16 to represent her country in both sports.
She played her first cricket international in July 2007 before earning her debut football cap a month later.
But Canberra United chief executive Heather Reid says the W-League club need the 21-year-old to commit fully to them or move on.
“We have basically given Ellyse an ultimatum,” Reid told ABC Grandstand on Tuesday.
“Ellyse needs to choose whether she wants to be a full-time Canberra United player and commit to training every day like everyone else does.
“Or if she still wants to try and mix her cricket commitment with football, then perhaps she will need to find another club.”
Perry is the first Australian woman to represent her country at a senior World Cup in two different sports.
She played for the Matildas at last year’s women’s football World Cup in Germany, where her goal in Australia’s 3-1 quarter-final loss to Sweden was voted one of the top 10 goals of the tournament.
She was also a key member of the Southern Stars squad at the 2009 cricket World Cup and isn’t showing any signs of slowing down.
“I’d absolutely love to still be involved with a W-League club next season,” Perry told AAP.
“My first preference would be to still play for Canberra because the last three seasons I’ve played there have been really enjoyable.
“But that’s the way sport is, you change clubs for any number of reasons, so I might have to have a look at another club.”
But Perry says with her Matildas commitments – they play New Zealand in June – and her vying for selection for September’s Twenty20 World Cup squad, she won’t be looking for another W-League team until later this year.
Perry admits her situation may not be ideal for clubs.
“I certainly don’t want to have any negative impact on any team or organisation I’m involved in,” Perry said.
“The coach (Jitka Klimkova) very much wanted all the players in her squad to live in Canberra and be able to commit on a full-time basis and given my commitment with cricket my arrangement hasn’t been like that.
“It’s certainly the coach’s prerogative and I completely understand and respect the direction she needs to take.”
But Perry, who is also studying a degree in economics and social sciences, says she will continue the double act for as long as she can.
“I’ve always maintained that if I really enjoy and love what I’m doing then I’ll continue doing it.
“So at the moment it still seems feasible to play both and I just love it so much. It’s a huge part of my life so for now I will continue to play both.” – AAP
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