In a shocking turn of events, Australia and West Indies have received a big blow ahead of the highly anticipated first semi-final of the Women's World Cup 2022. While Australian all-rounder Ellie Perry has been ruled out of the match due to a back spasm, West Indies women cricketer Afy Fletcher will miss the match after being diagnosed with Covid 19. As per reports, Fletcher complained of a high fever, and when she was tested, her results came positive for the Covid virus.
Australian skipper Meg Lanning informed on Tuesday that her side will play the semi-final game without Perry, and termed it "quite unfortunate." She added that the all-rounder would be missed in the game as she has been in good form, but the coaching staff will closely monitor her situation. In the pre-match press conference, Lanning informed that Perry batted in the nets but just wasn't in a position to be able to perform at the level needed for the game.
Notably, Perry had missed the semi-final and final of the 2020 T20 World Cup because of a hamstring injury. She suffered back spasms in Australia's win over South Africa early last week and sat out training until Monday's session.
Mandy Mangru to replace Fletcher
Regarding Fletcher's replacement, it is reported that all-rounder Mandy Mangru, who has played a solitary ODI for the West Indies against South Africa, will join the squad in place of the experienced spinner. The absence of Fletcher reduces West Indies' bowling options against six-time champions Australia and robs them of an experienced player who has played 58 ODIs for the Caribbean side. Fletcher had picked up four wickets from three matches at the Women's Cricket World Cup, with her best haul coming against Bangladesh when she collected 3/29 from 10 overs in Mount Maunganui.