Perry faces ankle surgery

TROJAN fast bowler Ellyse Perry faces ankle surgery on her return to Australia after justifying her World Cup final selection with a pivotal performance.

Perry, 22, was recalled to the Southern Stars line-up in place of 17-year-old Holly Ferling for Sunday's final against the West Indies in Mumbai after passing a fitness test and having a painkilling injection to lessen the effects of a nagging bone impingement.

The Sydneysider's fitness was under significant scrutiny after she aborted her first two attempts to bowl. While Perry's immediate reaction was pessimistic - ''I thought 'It's going to be quite a long night!' '' - Stars coach Cathryn Fitzpatrick said she remained confident they had made the right selection decision. ''We knew that she'd got a jab in the ankle to try and get through but she'd bowled in the warm-up … so we knew there wasn't a problem. We just thought she needed to get a little bit more feeling back in it,'' she said.

'' 'Pez' trained a couple of days ago and that's all we needed from her, because we knew she could come in and hit the wicket hard. Holly couldn't have done more than what we asked but if Ellyse Perry's fit you don't leave her on the sidelines.''

The West Indies were progressing solidly when Perry was called into the attack in the 10th over. By the right-armer's third over she had taken 3-2, including the vital wicket of star batter Stafanie Taylor, to strengthen Australia's pursuit of the World Cup trophy.

''We didn't want her to take the new ball because our swing bowlers had been doing the job for us, but with the way the West Indies girls were playing across the line we knew we wanted to get 'Pez' on to bowl straight with a few extra kilometres [of pace] - and she did exactly what she needed to do,'' Fitzpatrick said.

Perry said the hindrance caused by her ankle injury on her left foot had been lessened due to the tireless work of the Stars' fitness staff.

''I've had this injury for the past three months or so. It's been a case of managing it. I don't think I've been 100 per cent for that time,'' she said. ''Given it was a World Cup final you do everything to be a part of it and contribute.''

Having also made a valuable 25 not out at the end of the Stars' batting innings Perry said she was happy to have justified her selection ahead of Ferling, whom she praised for performances in her absence.

''The most exciting thing for Holly is that there's so much ahead of her. I'm looking forward to the day when we're bowling together … she's got such a bright future,'' she said.

Perry finished with a team-best 3-19 off 10 overs, but was trumped for the player of the match award by top-order batter Jess Cameron, who made 75 in the Stars' insurmountable total of 7-259.

This story Perry faces ankle surgery first appeared on WA Today.