20/04/2024

Amanda-Jade Wellington says she's grateful to be part of the Australian side once again. (Image: Adelaide Strikers)

Leg-spinner Amanda-Jade Wellington is excited to be part of the Australia set-up ahead of the Women's World Cup.

Australian leg-spinner Amanda-Jade Wellington says she’s excited to be back part of the international team set-up ahead of the upcoming ICC Women’s World Cup.

Wellington said while she was disappointed to be left out of the recent Ashes series, she is eager to return to the Australia set-up for the first time since 2018 having been part of the Australian A side.

“Obviously I was very disappointed to be missing out on the Ashes, but to be part of that Aussie A squad was fantastic,” Wellington said.

“Just to have the feeling of being back around in an Australian environment was awesome, and I was very grateful for that opportunity, but to be part of the World Cup squad I feel like a kid in a candy store.

“It feels amazing to just be part of squad, if I play I’m happy if I don’t I’m happy, just to be in this environment again and to get the opportunity to put on the Aussie colours again is pretty special for me.”

Having also taken time out of the game to focus on her mental health, Wellington said she used the time away to change her playing style and says she’s starting to recapture her love of the game.

“I think mentioned it a few times in [team] meetings and interviews my mental health, I think me taking a break from the game has changed me mentally and physically as well,” she said.

“Just putting more time and effort into myself and reflecting how I was as player and how I could change.

“I wasn’t enjoying the game, I wasn’t having much fun and then to come back and enjoy it again and have that love for the game…as a spinner I just love the way I bowl.

“I’m not going to change for anyone and it’s great to see when I come into a side like this, the amount of depth that we’ve got I don’t have to change as a person and as a player which is really comfortable for me and gives me feedback that I’m doing the right things and it’s great.”

Having been part of the Australian A side women’s side which took on England, Wellington says she wasn’t purely focused on making sure she was a stand-out performer and got noticed by selectors. Rather she was looking just to be consistent and said she was pleased with her performances.

“For me it more about consistency and performances, I feel as a spinner I’m a wicket taking option, I know that leg-spinners were either going to go for runs or we’re going to get a lot of wickets, so it can go either way,” she said.

“One day you can have a great day, one day you can have a bad day, [I was] just taking the good with the bad, and I knew if I could be consistent throughout the tournament I’ll be happy with that, and that’s what happened.”

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Speaking on the process of how she got back into the international set-up, Wellington said she was happy with the advice of selectors and coaches.

She credited SA Scorpions coach Luke Williams and Women’s Chair of Selectors for Cricket Australia Shawn Flegler on giving her insight on what she needed to improve to be recalled to the Australian camp.

“One thing I was really pleased with the Ashes selection the night it was picked, we had a Zoom meeting [on] what I needed to do and what needed to improve, and there was a lot of clarification around that,” she said.

“I was very thankful for Luke Williams back in my home state with SA Scorpions, he teed that [meeting] up with Shawn Flegler, we had really good discussions and I was very thankful for them for doing that.

“It just gave me a bit more clarity and a clearer mind on what I needed to achieve.”

Needing to improve her game to be recalled to the squad, Wellington says it was more mental that physical, saying she needed to change her approach to games.

“I did a lot of work during preseason with my bowling coach Jude Coleman, we worked a lot on my front arm and that’s where everything begins when you’re bowling and your action, and I think that helped me a lot,” she said.

“But the main changes for me was my mindset and the way I approach the game, just to have that enjoyment again and remember why I fell in love in the game, I find when I have fun through cricket that’s when I’m performing my best.

“I just need to remember if I’m having fun I’m going to do well and if it doesn’t come off it’s okay, it’s okay to smile [because] at the end of the day it is just a cricket game.”

Wellington also touched on the possibility of playing alongside fellow spin bowler Alana King who has also been inform this summer. She feels the duo could make for a great partnership but says it’s up to the selectors if they’ll play alongside each other.

“I think she’s done a lot of work over the years, I’ve actually been part of the NPS [National Performance Squad] squad a few years back with her, we were always working together in the nets, and as fellow leg spinners we always watch each other in the nets,” she said.

“It’s fantastic to see her doing so well, she had a fantastic WBBL season…but I haven’t had that opportunity yet to be in the nets bowling alongside her, so its going to be interesting to see if we play together in a game because we’re so different.

“I think it could work really well but that’s one for the selectors, if it happens it happens, if it doesn’t it doesn’t.”

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