The complete shutdown due to Coronavirus pandemic has led Australia skipper Meg Lanning to ponder her next move going into the sixth season of the Women’s Big Bash League. Lanning, who led Melbourne Stars for the first two seasons, made a shock move to Perth Scorchers in 2017 but is currently out of contract after her three-year deal expired at the end of last season.
A move home to Melbourne would have its appeal for the T20 World Cup-winning captain given she spends the majority of the year on the road with the national side, but new Scorchers coach Shelley Nitchske has said keeping the star batter in Perth is her ‘top priority’.
The 28-year-old has been expected to finalise her next move after the recent T20 World Cup, but the delay in the announcement of Cricket Australia’s national contract list means she gets more time to think of her future.
“I really enjoyed my three years in Perth, they’re a great club, really well run and Shelley Nitchske is now the coach there,” Lanning told reporters on Monday (March 30).
“So I’ll have to have a look at what I want to do … it’s given me a little bit more time to think about it and work it out.” Lanning was the fourth-highest run-scorer in the last season, clubbing her maiden century for the Scorchers to help lift them into the finals. Meanwhile, her former side Melbourne finished at bottom last season and remains the only side in the competition to have not featured in any of the finals.
But with the appointment of her former national teammate, Leah Poulton at the helm of the Stars, and the potential for a revamped set-up, Lanning may consider returning home. The family also might play a role for the Aussie skipper with sister Anna joining Melbourne Renegades last season.
“I put it on the backburner (during the World Cup) so I could focus on what we had at hand, so I hadn’t given it a lot of thought over the last few months,” Lanning said. “So it’s probably a good thing that I have a bit of time to work out what I’m after over the next little bit in the WBBL and where I’m best suited. It gives me a bit of extra time to think.”