CommBank T20 Series v NZ
Australia consider unleashing fiery quick
Tayla Vlaeminck has edged closer to an international debut, producing raw pace in the nets and passing a fitness test ahead of Friday's third T20I in Canberra
4 October 2018, 03:03 PM AEST
She's already broken a teammate's bat this week, now Australia captain Meg Lanning is considering unleashing fast bowler Tayla Vlaeminck on New Zealand in Friday's third trans-Tasman T20I at Manuka Oval.
The uncapped teenager has been passed fit for selection for the series finale after being ruled out of the opening two matches of the Commonwealth Bank Women's T20I series due to a minor quad complaint.
After the display Vlaeminck produced in the Manuka Oval nets on Wednesday – when she managed to snap Alyssa Healy's bat clean in half – Lanning is excited by what the 19-year-old right-armer could do if handed a debut on Friday night.
"Tayla's just got that raw pace and excitement with the ball, she's a wicket-taking bowler who runs in and gives it all she's got," Lanning said at Manuka Oval on Thursday morning.
"She's fitted into the group really nicely. I think she broke Alyssa Healy's bat at training yesterday so she's bowling with decent pace.
"If she does get her opportunity, I'm sure she'll do really well.
"We've not sure yet (if the team will change), I haven't seen the wicket or the conditions yet.
"We've got training this afternoon, so we'll have a look then and go from there."
On Sunday, Australia coach Matthew Mott said he was keen to see Vlaeminck given an opportunity, but added there would be no risks taken with the Melbourne Renegades quick given her history of injury concerns, including two knee reconstructions and a dislocated shoulder.
"She's certainly a player we're looking to hopefully play in game three (in Canberra)," Mott said on Sunday.
"But we'll be very conservative with her with a huge couple of months coming up. As we saw from the Kiwis (on Saturday night), if you throw a bit of extra pace in the game it changes things up."
Speaking in Canberra on Tuesday, Australia spearhead Megan Schutt said Vlaeminck could bring a point of difference to their pace attack.
"She brings pace, she's probably got about 10 to 15 clicks on me which isn't hard, but she's a great young kid," Schutt said.
"She's got a bit of a different action too, she's a bit hard to actually pick up the ball.
"Other than that, she just brings heat and obviously a fresh young face it's nice."
One conundrum for selectors would be who to leave out should Vlaeminck be called into the Australian attack, given their success in the opening two matches.
Allrounder Delissa Kimmince bowled admirably under pressure in Brisbane alongside Schutt, while left-arm spinner Sophie Molineux has taken on the role left open by injured allrounder Jess Jonassen during the power play and at the death.
With that in mind, it could come down to a choice between Vlaeminck and teenage leg-spinner Georgia Wareham, who debuted at North Sydney Oval and who's picked up two wickets in her first two international matches.
Friday's third and final T20I will kick off at Manuka Oval at 7.20pm AEST, with live coverage on Channel Seven, Fox Sports and cricket.com.au.
CommBank T20 INTLs v NZ
September 29: Australia win by six wickets
October 1: Australia win by six wickets
October 5: Third T20I, Manuka Oval, Canberra
Australia squad: Meg Lanning (c), Rachael Haynes (vc), Nicola Carey, Ashleigh Gardner, Alyssa Healy, Delissa Kimmince, Sophie Molineux, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Elyse Villani, Tayla Vlaeminck, Georgia Wareham
New Zealand squad: Suzie Bates, Bernadine Bezuidenhout, Sophie Devine, Kate Ebrahim, Maddy Green, Holly Huddleston, Hayley Jensen, Leigh Kasperek, Amelia Kerr, Katey Martin, Amy Satterthwaite (c), Lea Tahuhu, Jess Watkin