Ashleigh Gardner expects Test cricket will once again bring out the best in Ellyse Perry, who struggled to contain India’s batters throughout the recent ODI series.
Perry, handed the new ball in all three one-dayers, conceded 7.35 runs per over from 14 overs to finish the least economical bowler of the series.
The superstar allrounder’s lack of control was notable, although there were glimpses of her best and a textbook bouncer that struck Mithali Raj’s helmet in the series opener.
Perry, one of the first players picked in Australia’s XI throughout a decorated career, has dominated in all three formats.
But the 30-year-old’s numbers in eight Tests are particularly remarkable; 31 wickets at 18.19 and 624 runs at 78.
Australia’s day-night Test against India starts on Thursday at Metricon Stadium, where Gardner is backing Perry to improve on her output in Mackay.
“More overs to bowl, more of a chance to get into a rhythm and build that pressure,” Gardner told AAP.
“She’s got a pretty good record in Test match cricket.
“Unfortunately for her, she probably hasn’t bowled as well as she would have liked (in the ODIs).
“She’s a world-class player and sometimes things don’t go your way.
“You obviously cop a lot of scrutiny, especially when you haver her name and everyone knows how capable she is of being the best cricketer in the world.”
It will be Perry’s first Test since undergoing major hamstring surgery in 2020, which came after she was forced to miss Australia’s Twenty20 World Cup final triumph over India at the MCG.
The dual international, who said upon her return from that setback that she wasn’t interested in playing as a specialist batter, noted this month that “it’s been a really great challenge to continue to evolve and try to improve (as a bowler).”
Gardner, who plays under Perry’s captaincy in the WBBL, pointed to the swing generated by the right-armer in Mackay as a big positive in what is a two-Test season.
“There’s plenty of good things to take out of it. She’s just got to be confident in what she’s been doing and what she’s done in the past,” the offspinning allrounder said.