Cricket Australia

http://www.cricket.com.au/Global Items/news/2014/3/22/world-t20-not-the-stars-to-lose

Reputation on the line for Aussies

UPDATED 22 March, 2014 5:42PM AEST | by AAP

Southern Stars know what to do says Lanning

Quick Single: Full Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars WorldT20 schedule

Two-time defending champions Australia will put their Twenty20 reputation on the line when their women's ICC World T20 campaign takes off against New Zealand on Sunday.

The Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars have been the undisputed queens of the format and are chasing an unprecedented three-peat of WT20 triumphs.

But newly installed skipper Meg Lanning, who during the summer Ashes became Australia's youngest female or male captain when she took the reins from the injured Jodie Fields, says they cannot let themselves believe the tournament is theirs to lose.

"We don't think in any way that it's ours already," Lanning told AAP ahead of Sunday's clash with New Zealand in Sylhet.

"We know that we've got to go out and win it and there's nine other teams who are going to be doing exactly the same thing."

Gone is the familiar face of Fields, the regular captain and a reliable force in the middle order, who will miss the tournament after failing to sufficiently recover from a finger injury. Experience, Lanning argues, is still on the Southern Stars' side.

"Jodie's a very dedicated player and very experienced as well. It certainly is a loss for us," she said. "She has been around the team for a long time for us and provides a lot of direction.

"It's disappointing that she's not here but I think we've been able to cover her as best we can.

"But we've still got experience in big games which helps but I think the team that adapts quickest to these conditions is going to be the overall winner."

Lanning is now able to call on rejuvenated veteran quick Rene Farrell, who played a key role in the 2010 title before walking away from the game after burnout.

"She's going to be a real key for us," Lanning said.

"I think she provides a lot of variety within our attack, which I think is important in this format.

"She's a wicket taker and has the experience, having been at World Cups before.

"She knows what to expect. She's really good at performing under pressure.

"She's going to be someone I turn to frequently."

Quick Single: Southern Stars fall in final hit-out

Stay up-to-date with the Stars' progress throughout the ICC World T20 on Twitter @SouthernStars

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 22 March, 2014 2:34PM AEST

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