Our last day in India was Alyssa's birthday, and the day after was Meg's, to celebtrate we had a final team dinner of the tour at the Taj Land's End back in Mumbai.
A last hurrah
Prior to dinner we had a really good team meeting. We all had an opportunity to share one thing that we did that was out of our comfort zone while on tour.
I told the team how I'd caught a train in Mumbai which sounds pretty tame but these trains have no doors and people have to hang onto the outside of the train when its chocker block full at peak hour! A few of the girls had participated in a street parade, dancing with the locals. Leah indulged in a full body balinese massage which she described as "very comprehensive".
This sharing of experiences was a really great way to finish off the tour. Dinner was a chance to celebrate the girls birthdays but also a chance to toast to great team success. 7-1 is a fantastic effort against any top 4 nation, and especially in the subcontinent. We know we were capable of an 8 nil whitewash so we are somewhat disappointed to have not finished off in style last night.
Having a blast
Overall, our 5 T20s in Vizag were really enjoyable. Prior to each match we had the opportunity to bat to dozens of net bowlers on some fantastic practice wickets. These guys would bowl all day if you asked them to! This really helped our preparation and to thank them the girls gave away gloves, shirts and caps at the conclusion of the series.
Midge was a real crowd pleaser in Vizag having blasted two big scores and possessing a willingness to respond to the whistling crowd via a wave, hair flick or toss of a water bottle into the stands!
Jako now has the highest number of T20 dismissals of any wicket keeper, Shaky became the leading T20 wicket taker and Leah also became the highest run scorer for Australia in this format surpassing Shelley Nitschke.
We soaked up our success and celebrated in the changerooms after the last match. Meg literally soaked up a whole eski of ice and water after Russ ambushed her when she least expected it. Midge ensured Russ did not get away unscathed and took revenge (on Meg's behalf) using a bucket from the toilets (nasty!) to drench him from behind. Soggy and our favourite local changeroom attendant "Savman" were sharing dance moves and despite being six months pregnant Savman out-did all of us in the groove department. Oz got the worm move out and this was the only time Savman held back a little. She told me "I can't the baby will come out!". It was probably for the best that Savman stuck with the sprinkler and shopping trolley!
Eyes on the World Cup
The cricket we have played all tour has been impressive - attacking, clinical and ruthless. We have put together good performances with both bat and ball in most of the matches. This is something we needed to improve on from our last couple of series. It is very exciting to see how the team is shaping up prior to our T20 World Cup defense in Sri Lanka in September. I think we'll give it a real shake!
Thanks India, we have have a wonderful time over the past 3 weeks. Now that the 2011/12 season in complete the Southern Stars are looking forward to touching down in our home cities for a well earned rest before we gear up again for the T20 World Cup. Well done team!
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia