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Alyssa Healy relishing prospect of ‘trench warfare’ in Ashes battle with England

Australia captain Alyssa Healy is relishing the “trench warfare” that could ensue over a five-day Test which marks the start of the multi-format Women’s Ashes.

Women’s Tests have customarily spanned four days but the last six matches worldwide dating back to 2017 have all been draws, prompting England and Australia to agree to an extension for this series opener.

Healy – skippering Australia in the absence of Meg Lanning, who is out of the tour for medical reasons – was adamant tacking on an extra day at Trent Bridge is no guarantee of bringing a positive result.

But she believes the elongation could present an extra dimension as her side looks to retain the urn they have held since 2015, having won three of the last four series between the teams with one draw.

“Five days here could be really interesting,” she said. “It’s probably just a mental battle and there could be a bit of trench warfare at times, we’ll see how it goes.

“It could present a result, but there are draws in five-day men’s games as well. We can’t be assured of that.

“We’ve come here to win the big moments and big matches, and this one to get four points up early, as an Aussie squad would be a great result.

“I think for the first time, there’s a sense of an unknown about both sides. It’s the next gen banging on the door and giving us a glimpse into what the Ashes series will look like for the next 10 years.”

Alyssa Healy will lead an Australia side that has held the Ashes since 2015 (Nigel French/PA)
Alyssa Healy will lead an Australia side that has held the Ashes since 2015 (Nigel French/PA)

While England named their XI early – with an international debut for seamer Lauren Filer and a Test bow for attacking batter Danni Wyatt – Healy was tight-lipped about her all-conquering Australia line-up.

However, she was unsurprised at England’s announcement, having worked under England head coach Jon Lewis when the pair were at UP Warriorz during the Women’s Premier League in India in March.

“It’s aggressive and attacking, I absolutely love it,” Healy said. “They were speaking about wanting to bring it.

“Spending a bit of time with Jon in the WIPL, his thoughts on the game and how he wants to play it reflects exactly that.”

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