The Versatile Sports Woman: Ellyse Perry

The Versatile Sports Woman: Ellyse Perry | CIO Women Magazine

“I know what sport has given to me in my life, what opportunities I’ve had, and the lessons I’ve learned about myself and about life.”

Ellyse Perry, a renowned Australian cricketer and soccer player, has won the hearts of many with her exceptional sporting skills from her early teenage days. She was the youngest cricketer to play in international cricket and her passion for the sport and versatile skills led her to where she’s today. In this article, we will learn about her life, challenges, and accomplishments.

Ellyse Perry’s Early Life

Ellyse Alexander Perry was born on 3rd November 1990, in the family of Mark and Kathy Perry in the suburb of Wahroonga, Sydney. She completed her schooling at Beecroft Primary School and participated in various sports like tennis, athletics, touch football, and golf. She completed her graduation from Pymble Ladies’ College, where she was sports captain as well. 

She spent her childhood playing cricket with her older brother in her backyard, where he used to practice for school cricket. She said that her father and brother inspired her to choose the sports industry. Mark Perry was a club-level cricketer and used to teach her to play. Apart from her father and brother, watching sports also played a big role. She said she loved watching Australian teams play both men and women while growing up.

In 2018 on her X handle, while answering her fans, she said, “I was fortunate to be born in an area when the Australian team was so successful. Those were the days of Steve Waugh, Rickey Ponting, and Adam Gilchrist, Lisa Sthalekar, Belinda Clarke. They used to play for Australia and were just amazing to watch. I don’t really know why I picked No. 8 as my jersey number. I think I was just given it actually, but I don’t like odd numbers, so as long as it is an even number, I don’t mind what number it is.”

The Versatile Sports Woman: Ellyse Perry | CIO Women Magazine
Source – pinterest

The Rise of the All-Rounder

Ellyse Perry made her international cricket debut for Australia in 2007 at the age of 16, before even playing at the senior domestic level. Initially, Perry filled the gap left by retired fast bowler Cathryn Fitzpatrick. However, she also had a promising soccer career and represented the Matildas. Eventually, she committed to cricket when Cricket Australia offered her a contract in 2008. Despite this, Perry continued to represent Australia in World Cup football, becoming the first woman to represent the country in World Cups in two sports. She even played for Sydney FC in the Women’s League.

Perry made headlines even before her Test debut in 2008. Her impressive performance in a T20I match against England, where she scored an unbeaten 29 and took four wickets, helped Australia secure a victory. Initially, her bowling skills stood out, as she achieved her first five-wicket haul in an ODI against New Zealand in February 2010. Perry continued to excel, leading the Australian team as their top wicket-taker in the Women’s World T20 in the Caribbean. Her outstanding performance in the final, where she took three wickets, played a crucial role in restricting New Zealand’s run chase. 

Perry also played a vital role in Australia’s four consecutive World Cup victories, with her heroic performance in the 2013 Women’s World Cup final against West Indies, where she bowled 10 overs and took three wickets despite being injured and in pain. Between 2014 and 2019, she achieved remarkable results in the Ashes, including a double century in Sydney and another century in Taunton. In 2015, she contributed immensely to Australia’s Ashes victory by taking nine wickets, even though she missed out with the bat. Perry’s batting skills reached new heights in the latter part of the decade, making her a consistent and reliable run-scorer for the Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash.

The Versatile Sports Woman: Ellyse Perry | CIO Women Magazine
Source – pinterest

Everything seemed to be going well for Perry’s participation in the T20 World Cup on home soil in 2020. However, during a group match against New Zealand, she suffered a severe hamstring injury, which forced her to miss the knockout stage of the tournament. Nonetheless, she stood with her team as they lifted the trophy in front of 86,000 cheering fans at the MCG.

Her Victories and Awards Throughout the Year

Ellyse Perry has won numerous awards in her sporting career, both in cricket and soccer. Here’s the list of the awards. 

Award WonYear
Rachael Heyhoe Flint Award2017, 2019, 2020
ICC Women’s ODI Cricketer of the Year 2019
ICC Women’s ODI Cricketer of the Decade2011–2020
ICC Women’s T20I Cricketer of the Decade2011–2020
Wisden Leading Woman Cricketer in the World2016, 2019
ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Player of the Final2010
Women’s Ashes Player of the Series2013–14, 2015, 2019
Belinda Clark Award2016, 2018, 2020
One of the five Wisden Cricketers of the Year2020
Women’s National Cricket League Player of the Tournament2015–16
Women’s National Cricket League Player of the Final2008–09
Women’s Big Bash League Player of the Tournament2018–19
Belinda Clark Medal2015–16, 2017–18, 2018–19
Cricket NSW Rising Star2007–08
Sydney Sixers Player of the Season2017–18, 2018–19
Sports NSW Athlete of the Year2019
Australia Post Legend of Cricket2021
W-League Young Player of the Year2009
Canberra United Player of the Year2009

Ellyse Perry as Author: Her Interest In Writing

Ellyse Perry, apart from being a renowned sports personality, received approaches for her autobiography and proceeded to publish a book ‘Perspective’ in 2019. Perspective covers the experiences of Ellyse Perry as an elite female athlete and her life. In an interview with Vogue, she said, 

“Initially I was a bit reluctant to do it, I didn’t really want to write something about my life story. I’ve kind of had a pretty smooth sailing journey.”

She also added that,

“I started to think that [it] would be really cool because I don’t think there are heaps of female athlete books out there like that, so I kind of got excited about it. We sat down and discussed some concepts and came up with a collection of short essays.”

Before her biography, she always had an interest in writing and had published four children’s books with Sherryl Clark, namely,

  • Ellyse Perry 1: Pocket Rocket (2016)
  • Ellyse Perry 2: Magic Feet (2016)
  • Ellyse Perry 3: Winning Touch (2017)
  • Ellyse Perry 4: Double Time (2017)
The Versatile Sports Woman: Ellyse Perry | CIO Women Magazine
Source – The Daily Gardian

Interesting Facts About Ellyse Perry 

  • Ellyse Perry is truly unique in the world of sports. She is the only cricketer who has represented Australia in both the Cricket and Soccer World Cups. This shows her incredible ability to excel in two very different sports.
  • Ellyse Perry made history as the first female cricketer to accomplish an amazing feat in T20 Internationals. She scored 1,000 runs and took 100 wickets, showcasing her incredible talent and skills in the shortest format of the game. 
  • In addition to her achievements on the field, Ellyse Perry’s impact reaches beyond cricket through endorsement deals with top brands like Adidas and Mastercard. These partnerships highlight her popularity and appeal, not just as a cricketer, but as a marketable figure.
  • Ellyse Perry achieved an incredible milestone in Test matches by scoring an unbeaten 213 runs, which is the highest individual score by an Australian woman. This remarkable achievement showcases her absolute dominance with the bat and her exceptional skills in the game.
  • Ellyse Perry is the first Australian cricketer to score over 6,000 runs and take more than 300 wickets in international matches.

Ellyse Perry has gained recognition as not just the youngest international cricketer, but also as a versatile and talented woman. She had achieved a lot since her debut at a small age and never looked back. Her dedication towards her dreams and vision of life is commendable and inspirational. 

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